Most people now seem to realize that plastic containers for food and beverages are not exactly the best material to use due to leaching, but what about recycled plastic containers? It turns out that those are even worse.
As many as 13,000 different chemicals have been identified in the manufacture of plastics. And since the government does not require testing for all of them, it is unknown exactly what these chemicals do to the human body upon consumption or absorption.
The Minderoo Foundation recently released a resource to help the public learn about these chemical toxins. The group's new open-access database contains about 3,500 studies on plastics chemicals that were published between 1961 and 2022.
These studies are helpful, covering the litany of identified problems with plastics. But again, what about recycled plastics? Those are safer, right? Not exactly.
Nearly 500 readily identifiable organic compounds found in recycled plastics
When many people think of recycling, they think of conservation and helping the planet – you know, like those little green logos on the recycling bins suggest. The impression one is left with is that recycled materials are better for the planet, and thus better for humans.
In the case of plastics, this is simply wrong. Recycled plastics, due to the various lives they lived before being recycled, tend to be contaminated with even more deadly chemicals than virgin plastics.