lunchbox lowdown

Are Storage Containers Contaminating Our Food?

Aunt Fannie Blog


We want our kids eating healthy lunches, and therefore we go to great lengths to pack nutritious meals to send them off with. From leftovers to lunchboxes, is our fresh food being contaminated from the storage containers we use?

Well… maybe.

Plastic safety has been a topic of discussion for years now. We’ve all heard the debate concerning the safety, or lack thereof, of BPA used in plastics from storage containers to water bottles.

bpa water bottleBPA Lowdown: Bisphenol A, a synthetic compound that has hormone-like properties that is used in the production of packaging materials and water pipes. It’s clear and shatter proof and could possibly effect the brain of infants and children at certain exposure levels.

As of 2010, most plastics are considered safe and no longer contain these harsh chemicals and in 2013 the FDA issued a report saying that BPA was considered safe because very little leaches into food (read more here). So is it really safe then?

The NIH made a great fact sheet (thank you) that explains the National Toxicology Program found BPA to exhibit “Some Concern” for adverse effects. P.S. on the scale of concerns that’s two levels higher than what we were okay with leaching into our freshly prepared food.

Bottom line: We’re skeptical and would prefer not to roll the dice when it comes to our well-being. We like to use products that exhibit zero concern for adverse effects on our children’s health. If you truly can’t kick the plastic (we get it, other options can be pricy), look for plastics that have #2, #4, or #5 – and say “Bye, Felicia” to #7 at all costs.

Ideally, glass is the best, but sending kids off to school with glass containers is a disaster waiting to happen. Stainless steel is another great option. In fact, we love these handy ones from PlanetBox. Need some alternative snack bags? We found these recyclable fabric ones by LunchSkins. Making the switch to safe and reusable containers is also cost-effective and will cut down on waste. Two benefits we can get behind.

eco friendly lunchboxes

Lastly,Aunt Fannie's Cleaning Vinegars make sure to wipe down the inside of your/ your children’s lunchboxes a couple times a week with our food-based Cleaning Vinegars. Vinegar kills 99.9% of the bacteria that causes foodborne illness including Salmonella, E.coli and Listeria.* It’s a simple step that can make a big difference.

*Virginia Tech Research, 2009, Effect of Alternative Household Sanitizing Formulations