Can You Put Hot Food in Plastic Containers?

In the food and beverage industry, safety always comes first. Proper food storage needs to be observed if you hope to keep your customers safe and satisfied, yet it’s not always easy to know which product can get the job done.

Whether you’re a restaurant owner, or a street food vendor, using the right containers to store and serve your food is a must.

At a time when sustainability and environmentalism are more important than ever before, using eco-friendly containers can have a significant impact on the wider world.

If you’re on the lookout for a new serving solution, it’s worth taking a look at some of the drawbacks of plastic and how a more environmentally friendly option is likely the best bet.

Dangerous Chemicals in Plastic

Storing hot food in plastic may end up inadvertently exposing your customers to potentially harmful chemicals, including Bisphenol A BPA, a common compound found in many plastics, including plenty of food containers.

There is evidence to suggest that BPA is linked to a range of diseases, including breast cancer and heart disease. When hot liquids and foods are stored in a plastic container, the heat can cause the chemical bonds in the plastic to react, creating instability and allowing BPA to break down into the contents inside.

This is why even when a plastic food container states that it’s microwave and dishwasher safe, it should be avoided as a storage method. Your customers will likely want to heat food you’ve served them once they’ve brought it home, so it’s worth thinking about the reactions during this process.

If you’re packaging up food in plastic containers for your customers to reheat later on, the seemingly microwave safe container could have a bad reaction with the heat. A better way to microwave food is to place it in a container made from Kraft paper, glass, or PLA, as these containers are BPA free.

Similarly, avoiding plastic wrap on your food is a good idea, as it can pose a similar threat if exposed to high temperatures, spoiling food in the process.

Endocrine Disrupters

The BPA found in plastic food containers (including water bottles) can act as a harmful endocrine disrupter, which can alter the natural hormones in the body, inhibiting growth and causing issues.

To avoid exposing your customers to this, and for the sake of your food’s quality, opting for a safer way to store your food, hot water and beverages is a great way to go.

Similarly, stainless steel containers can be problematic when storing acidic food or many types of hot soup, so make sure you’re using food-grade containers to be safe.

Avoiding Plastic for Hot Food

While it might be safe to put food that’s been cooled in plastic containers, hot food may cause problems over time.

Plastic also takes hundreds of years to degrade, and the material has long caused an issue for the environment, a problem that’s partly down to the food and beverage industry.

Greener alternatives for hot food containers are therefore not only safer for the customer, but they’re better for the world as a whole, particularly when you opt for a bio-degradable material like Kraft paper.

From soup sauces to burgers and everything in between, there’s a greener alternative than plastic, and you might find it costs you much less to use.

Make the change now!

Get in touch and see how we can help you be greener with your takeaway food packaging. Request a catalogue or further info on 0121 289 4295 or alternatively email [email protected].

plastic recycle


Subscribe to Our Newsletter and
Receive Exclusive Offers Every Week