Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Better Bottle

There were SO many beverage companies at the Natural Products Expo that had their products in plastic bottles. So many. STILL. Natural, after all, does not equal green or even eco-friendly... though one would think it should. But it doesn't. I gravitated toward products in glass bottles. There were a few. And I was looking at baby products, as my step-daughter is having one. A baby, not a product. She doesn't pay much attention to green products, but hey I thought I would try. Turns out I will have lots to share with you guys, anyway! I learned a lot! But I digress.

A small booth with colorful things caught my baby-product-aware eye. The extremely nice people there (I failed to write down their names, ARRG!) were very informative. The company is Pura (http://www.purastainless.com/), and they were showing their line of stainless steel baby bottles, Pura Kiki. Here I come with my less than zero knowledge of baby bottles. I don't even know what most parents use, I really don't. There are plastic ones out there, right? Because glass if far superior but glass breaks and is inconvenient and we aren't as smart or savvy as our grandparents who successfully (apparently) DID use glass, and oh it's just so heavy to have to carry everywhere we run around and around and around with our super trendy diaper bags and SUV's. (But I digress.) So, yeah, glass is not an option, though I have seen awesome glass baby bottles with silicone sleeves. But no. How about plastic bottle WITH those plastic liners? There ya go. Double the plastic, double the fun, double the convenience, double the easy clean-up. I don't know, I really don't. Yes, yes, yes, having babies is hard and time-consuming and messy and I shouldn't talk because I don't have any and I can't possibly understand and when you have a baby you need everything to be super-easy and convenient and mess-free as possible because I can't possibly understand how hard it it. Yeah? Well, here's my motto: if you can't do it right, don't do it. (BUT I DIGRESS!!!!) ANYWAY....  these bottle at Pura are stainless steel, because, apparently, even BPA-free plastic will leach dangerous chemicals in your beverage, especially when exposed to dishwasher humidity and boiling. (Re-read that sentence; it is important.) They have silicone sleeves for protection and a host of other things, and they fit a variety of different nipples from other manufacturers. See? I didn't even know those things were usually proprietary. Duh. The bottles are light and as your child gets older you can put a sippy-top on it, thereby eliminating the need to continually buy anything plastic... and they even have adult bottles. I live in this world. Therefore, I do have the right to ask that other people who use this world too, use it properly and don't mess it up for the rest of us. That includes parents. Just because you had to have a baby does not give you the right to trash the planet for the rest of us who are otherwise living a little more responsible. (So there - digression complete.)

It was pointed out to me that stainless steel production is not the eco-friendliest thing. True. But, what is? What is better? What is the effect seven generations down the line? Because, for that matter, solar panels SUCK from an environmental standpoint. They take very precious rare minerals mined from very horrible places. But the long-term pay-off is what we are seeking, right? Are you going to get a stainless steel bottle and get rid of it after a few uses, or are you going to use it for years, because it WILL last that long? If you were not using it, would you use 10, 50, 100 or more plastic bottles? Is that not much worse in the long-term? Steel, even stainless, can and will be recycled much more readily than plastic. This makes it a better answer in my book, if you are going to rule out glass altogether.

Your child can use this bottle for years. How much plastic does that replace? Isn't that worth it?