Last summer we broke the story about BPA epoxy finish on the lids used in home canning. We acknowledged that it was not a huge problem, as the lids are a small proportion of interior surface area of the bottle, and that there is a head space between the food and the lid, but it was aggravating; that is why people can their food, to get away from this kind of stuff.
Now, Food in Jars, a site followed by our foodwriter Kelly, describes Tattler lids. They are not only BPA free, but they are reusable.
According to the Tattler website, their reusable lids are "manufactured using a plastic compound that is safe for direct contact with food products. We utilize an FDA and USDA approved, food grade product known as Polyoxymethylene Copolymer (POM) or Acetal Copolymer," which is approved by the FDA for food contact applications including meat and poultry. Of course, as my editor pointed out, BPA is also approved by the FDA . But not all plastics are endocrine disruptors and many are safe to use for food. POM's trade name is Delrin, and is used in everything from guitar picks to body piercing jewellery. It is made from formaldehyde, and when burned, will release formaldehyde gas. It can fail in the presence of chlorine, and was used in plumbing for a while until fittings cracked due to exposure to chlorinated water. More in Wikipedia.
Homestead Revival describes how to use them, and lists their benefits:
- The lids won't rust, so they always seem so much cleaner to me.
- They're reuseable, so you don't have to buy more lids all the time.
- They're BPA free! You can use them with confidence that the lids aren't leeching toxins into your food.
- They're easy to work with (and I'm going to show you how).
- The folks over at Tattler are so nice! (I like dealing with nice people.)
The last point is one you cannot make about Jarden, the maker of the regular lids; I contacted them three times for comment and they ignored me.
The lids are expensive, but reusable. However if you are giving your canning away as TreeHugger Kelly often does, the cost can add up; the picture above shows her canning, not including tomatoes, another 100 jars. Homestead Revival adds a little poem with each bottle:
These lids are re-useable
and kindly for that reason,
please return me to my home
if you want some more next season!"
More at Homestead Revival and Food in Jars
More on Bisphenol A in food:
Is There Bisphenol A In Your Home Canning?
Bisphenol A Is In Your Tomato Sauce
BPA Danger may be greater from Tin Cans than Water Bottles