From an environmental point of view, most people have already come to the right conclusion when it comes to one of the most important issues being discussed today, using glass bottles or plastic. Glass bottles are environmentally-friendly, plastic bottles are NOT! It cannot be put any simpler then that, one hurts us and our environment and one does not…plastic bottles are not the way moving forward into the future glass bottles are!
2.7 million tons of plastic bottles are used each year worldwide for disposable drinking bottles, with only 1% being recycled, only 1%! Glass bottles are made out of abundant natural resources, and require low energy inputs in the manufacturing process, compared to plastic. Plastic bottles are not biodegradable, meaning they can stay on this green earth for millennia. The artificial toxins from degrading plastics can leach into soil, affecting underground water reserves and farmland. While glass bottles are comparably more heavy and difficult to transport, they hold more benefits for the environment in the long run, we have to look towards what’s best for us and our children, glass is the answer, plastic is the problem.
- It’s longer-lasting
Glass bottles can be recycled indefinitely, meaning when we throw out glass bottles, they’re easily recyclable in plants to make other glass materials. While glass recycling is a continuous loop, recycled plastic eventually breaks during the process, rendering the material useless. Furthermore, glass bottles don’t wear out with each subsequent use, while plastic bottles need to be thrown out after a few uses. Pyrex glass can be used for both hot and cold substances, while, as mentioned previously, plastic containers easily contaminate warm materials with toxin seepage.
- Flavor Preservation
We’re settling the age-old argument of whether drinks taste better in glass, plastic or cans. Glass is odorless and tasteless, which means it is neutral to two main senses. Plastic omits a slight chemical taste, because the chemicals can seep into our drinks. Studies also show that human perception is important in determining how food or drinks taste. The color and appearance of a bottle often can affect the way we perceive taste. Water in glass bottles are designed to look aesthetically pleasing to the drinkers, which suggests the water may taste better!
Believe it or not, before the invention of plastic bottles most were actually glass – Including baby bottles – but, because they were considered breakable, the bottles became almost obsolete upon the introduction of a plastic alternative. At the time, of course, the concerns over potential harmful chemicals within the plastic were not apparent. And even though many plastic consumables are now BPA free (considered a potentially harmful plastic chemical), some academics argue that further discoveries of harmful components may still lie uncovered. A focus in the media recently on the dangers of leaving plastic water bottles in sunlight for example simply highlights this fact further. As this research continues to evolve, many of us are becoming more and more conscious and engaged with these concerning issues.
Aside from the health benefits, glass is easier to clean than plastic and can be sterilized very quickly in boiling water – a huge benefit when thinking about baby bottles in particular. Glass bottles last a lot longer than plastic alternatives and are also easily recyclable. In general, glass is considered a better material for the environment and kinder to our bodies too.
Here are 5 very compelling reasons and facts that further illustrate the need for us to use Glass over Plastic
- Keeps food safe. Scientists no longer ask if toxic substances migrate from plastic to food during microwave heating. They ask how much toxins migrate. They ask if you should use plastic to reheat foods for kids, the ill, the elderly. They ask far too many questions and provide too few reassuring answers, as far as I’m concerned. Glass is simply prettier and more substantial looking than plastic. Glass containers retain their crystalline attractiveness forever. Unlike plastic, glass non-porous surface doesn’t absorb dyes or colors. On another safety note: Glass is cleaner than plastic. Glass’ non-porous surface doesn’t absorb food and germs and it can be safely washed at high temperatures in your dishwasher.
- Enhances food flavor. Ever notice how milk and marinara from your grocer taste better packed in glass? The same is true of home-stored food. Food simply tastes fresher, cleaner andfuller stored in glass. Glasses safe glossy surface repels food odors and residual flavors and food reheated in glass—whether in a conventional oven or microwave—tastes superior to food nuked in plastic.
- Helps clean-up the planet. Using glass rather than plastic significantly reduces landfill. It also saves energy on plastic’s inefficient recycling process. And unlike that metastasizing heap of mismatched plastic containers in your kitchen cupboard, once you invest in glass storage containers, your supply pretty much stays steady. With care, you’ll use your original glass containers almost indefinitely
- If you break a glass container, you can recycle it without guilt:
- Up to 87% of all recycled glass can be reclaimed.
- Recycled glass uses 59% less energy than manufacturing new glass.
- Recycling doesn’t compromise glass’ quality or structure and no toxins are produced in it’s recycling.
- Eases food prep, serving and clean-up. You’ll find tempered glass food containers:
- Move effortlessly from freezer to fridge to stove to table.
- Reduce food waste—clear containers let you see what’s in the fridge and use up leftovers before they go bad.
- Let you safely check food as it reheats—glasses clarity allows you to see what’s happening without removing lids.
- Wash-up faster and cleaner—you can safely pop glass into your dishwasher and cleanse at high temperatures. Plastic as we all know is sometimes dishwasher and microwavable safe and sometimes NOT…always that extra step to make sure your good to go and not melting or blowing up your plastic container.
A move to glass storage marks a raised consciousness—arguably glasses most valuable environmental benefit. Your investment in glass helps you move from a throw-away mind-set to a more sustainable sensibility. Glass saves you money in the long run because glass is usually more expensive than plastic, at first glance, it seems a switch to glass will be more costly. But think about this: Unlike plastic, glass is pretty much a one-time investment.
At Cayuga, we feel strongly about not using plastic. We have replaced bathroom amenities, plastic straws and plastic bottles at our sustainable luxury hotels and lodges. But we are not done yet. Every day we try to figure out how to use less plastic. If you have ideas how to achieve this, let us know.
–Pick glass not plastic, It’s the smarter safer choice–