The Best BPA Free Containers For Storage Or Kids Lunches

BPA-free containers for lunch boxes, leftovers or storing food.

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World-wide Concern about BPA

BPA or bisphenol A is now widely recognized as a chemical to which we should either limit exposure or avoid. The USA National Toxicology Program has concluded that at the current level of exposure there is some concern for the effects of BPA on foetuses, babies and children. The particular areas of concern are on the brain, behavior and prostate gland. In 2003 – 2004 a research project found traces of BPA in 93% of urine samples from people aged six or over.

Partly, it is the sheer quantity of BPA in the environment that leads to the high risk of contamination. It is present in many polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins. Some places you could be exposed to BPA are: food cans, water pipes, some dental sealants, food storage containers or water bottles. In several countries its use in babies’ bottles is now banned.

What is BPA?

BPA is known to be a hormone disrupter. Hormone disrupters either mimic or block our natural hormones, and can cause hormonal imbalances in the body. The hormone that BPA has an impact on is estrogen, and some people are concerned that it could be implicated in breast cancer. The main reason BPA has been banned from babies’ bottles is because it leaches from plastics when they are heated. While there is still more research needed to ascertain its effects, it is wise to limit exposure, especially for our children.

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BPA-Free Plastic is Available

Fortunately, not all plastics contain BPA and not all containers contain plastic! If you have plastic containers with a recycling symbol on them, check the number. Numbers 3 and 7 are the ones to avoid. While not all plastics with those numbers will contain BPA, there is a strong chance they will – and so they are best avoided.

An Alternative to Plastic

A very good alternative container to plastic is stainless steel. It is possible to buy containers that are entirely stainless steel, but more often you will find them with a BPA free plastic lid. Two companies that make them with children’s lunchboxes in mind are Kids’ Konserve and LunchBots. Both have a wide range of containers to choose from, and LunchBots even have an insulated container that will keep food warm (or cold) for up to 5 hours. Because of the way the lid of this container is designed, no plastic comes into contact with the hot food.

BPA-free Containers are available on Amazon

U Konserve Nesting Trio Stainless Steel Containers with Leak-Resistant Lids, Turquoise/Yellow/Lavender
U Konserve Nesting Trio Stainless Steel Containers with Leak-Resistant Lids, Turquoise/Yellow/Lavender

These have BPA free plastic lids and come in sets of 3, with 2 choices of color.

 
Kids Konserve Stainless Steel Mini Food Containers, Set of 3
Kids Konserve Stainless Steel Mini Food Containers, Set of 3

If you want to go completely plastic free, this is the best choice for you.They are small, so are probably best for snacks or little children's lunches.

 
LunchBots Eco Stainless Steel Food Container, Green
LunchBots Eco Stainless Steel Food Container, Green

Another good option are Lunchbots. Also a stainless steel container with a BPA free lid, this shape might be more suitable for sandwiches.

 

Kids Konserve Containers

The containers we use are the Nesting Trio with Leak-Proof Lids by Kids Konserve, made of stainless steel. I found it hard to believe the lids really would be leak-proof, so I filled one with water, put the lid on top, turned it upside-down and left it for an hour. Not a drop of water had spilled out. When I turned it the right way up and took off the lid a little water did splash out. But as you are not likely to use them to store water, I think we can say that for most foods they will be fully leak-proof. Certainly they are suitable for dips such as hummus.

These Kids Konserve containers are easy to store when not in use because they all fit inside each other, even with their lids on. Although Kids Konserve suggests that all the containers are suitable for lunchboxes, we found the large one a little too big.

We use the smaller two containers for our children’s lunchboxes, and the larger one for storing food. Most lunch-times at school my daughters, aged 12 and 14, have a bread roll filled with nut butter or cheese, and that fits perfectly into the middle container. In the smallest container they have chopped up vegetables or cherry tomatoes. It can hold 6 cherry tomatoes, or a chopped carrot or pepper – enough for a portion of vegetables. You can see the filled containers in the photograph at the top, or in the photo below. Although the container looks very small, it is possible to fit an entire romano pepper inside.

This entire Romano pepper fits into the smallest container

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Kids' Konserve Colors

There are 2 different sets of containers you can choose from, which makes it easy for 2 kids to have their own colors of lid.
There are 2 different sets of containers you can choose from, which makes it easy for 2 kids to have their own colors of lid. | Source

Quality of the Lids

Reading reviews on Amazon, I noticed that one or people say that lids have cracked. This surprised me because the quality of the lid is one of the reasons I like these containers so much. We have been using various brands of stainless steel containers with plastic lids for several years, and the Kids Konserve lids are far better than any others I have used. Ours are a year old now and as good as new. I guess with any product line there will be a few that are faulty, and Kids Konserve do offer a full money back guarantee if you are dissatisfied in any way with their products.

The photos below show the difference between the lid on a container by a different manufacturer and a Kids Conserve one. The other lid has buckled which makes it impossible to stay on its container, and it has also cracked. The Kids Konserve lid is flat and intact after being used for school lunches for one year.

How to wash the containers.

It's possible that some of the people who complained of cracked lids have washed their containers differently to how we do. I often put the containers in the dishwasher, but always wash the lids by hand.

The lid on the left is by another manufacturer, the one on the right is Kids Konserve

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My rating for Kids Konserve

5 stars for Kids Konserve Nesting Trio Stainless Steel Containers

Further reading and references

The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences: Bisphenol A (BPA)

Government of Canada: Bisphenol A

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Comments 17 comments

Marcy Goodfleisch profile image

Marcy Goodfleisch 4 years ago from Planet Earth

BPA is definitely a concern - it's one of those hidden dangers that too few people know about. This is very helpful information, and it's important for kids' health to be aware of it. In the past century, so many harmful chemicals and products have been introduced into our environment.

Thanks for this information! Voted up!


josh3418 profile image

josh3418 4 years ago from Pennsylvania

Melovy,

Very informative! I have absolutley no knowledge about the whole BPA thing, so I am glad I came across this hub. You make some good points and your description of the containers was interesting and very thorough! Thanks Melovy!


TahoeDoc profile image

TahoeDoc 4 years ago from Lake Tahoe, California

Have converted all (almost) of the plastic in our house to BPA-free. Luckily, there are many more types and sizes of containers available now than a couple years ago. Most important to me were the kids water bottles and their lunch containers. Good job on providing an organized, concise guide for parents who may share our concern!


summerberrie 4 years ago

Wow, like josh3418, this was all new to me,too. Great information. Thanks for providing resources for alternative containers!


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 4 years ago from New York

My daughter and daughter-in-law started a campaign against BPA in my family. Last year's Christmas present to my daughter-in-law was stainless steel containers for her to take her lunch to work in...they also had stainless steel lids.

This was very informative and a lot of parents need to read this.

Voted up, useful, and interesting.


Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

Josh, many people aren't aware of the issues with BPA, but a lot has changed in just a few years. WWF has been campaigning on it for some years and it is certainly being taken seriously by governments now.

Thanks for your comment.


Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

Hi TahoeDoc,

Good for you! I haven't bought canned food in years because of the BPA in linings, and have tried to use alternatives to plastic, or find BPA free. You are right about there being more available now, and I also agree that kids' water bottles and lunch containers are most important.

Thanks for your positive comment!


Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

Summerberrie, glad you liked the information and thanks for your comment.


Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

Hi tillsontitan,

Good for your daughter and daughter-in-law! It's really heartening to read about so many other people who are becoming aware of this issue. When I first learned about the hazards of BPA I wrote to several manufacturers of organic canned foods - all used BPA in their linings and one was downright rude to me. So I am very pleased to see growing awareness and that governments now take it seriously.

Thanks for your kind comment.


Amy Gillie profile image

Amy Gillie 4 years ago from Indiana

I'm definitely going to have to try these! Voted up!


Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

Thanks Amy.


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 4 years ago from USA

I'm so glad to have discovered this hub. BPA is associated with so many health issues that it's especially important to be aware of products containing it. Your suggestion of using stainless steel containers instead of plastic is great! We have also switched to stainless steel water bottles, and the water even tastes better! I'm linking your article to my article on What's Making You Fat in the section on BPA.

Voted up, useful and interesting, and I'm sharing on Pinterest!


Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

Hi Stephanie,

We also mainly use stainless steel bottles, though my husband did find one that was BPA free. I have written a few articles on this issue and will link to yours from mine on xenoestrogens.

Thanks very much for your comment, the link and for sharing.


mecheshier profile image

mecheshier 4 years ago

Fabulous Hub. Love the extensive research you have done. Thanks for sharing. Voted up for awesome and useful.


Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

Hi mecheshier,

I'm glad you found this useful, and thanks for your comment. I was really pleased to find these containers and really pleased with how well they do.


mecheshier profile image

mecheshier 4 years ago

You are welcome Melovy, it is a great post! It is good that they are also durable and air-tight. A fabulous product.


Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

Mecheshier, I realised, as I was washing up today, that it's because the lid has a double lip that they are so air-tight. I think on Amazon some people said this makes them challenging for younger kids to open, but as long as an adult can help then they are fine.

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