I remember I was in ATC a few years ago and I bought lemonade from Auntie Anne’s. The girl gets the lemonade from the dispenser and puts it in the plastic cup.
AA Girl: Ma’am naubusan po kami ng cover [Ma’am, we ran out of cup covers]
ME: Ha, maglalakad ako sa mall na walang takip yung lemonade ko? [Huh, I’ll walk around the mall without a cover over my drink] Sub-thought: All those droplets flying in the air!!
AA GIRL: Ma’am kung gusto niyo ilagay ko na lang sa plastic. [Ma’am if you want I’ll put it in a plastic bag instead.]
ME: …. (Incredulous face)
*Heavy weight of exasperation fills the ATC air
She was going to put my lemonade in a plastic bag with a straw! And this is the white opaque plastic bag that they put the pretzels in. *roll eyes
When we were kids, we actually did drink Coke from a clear plastic bag with a straw (bought from the sari-sari store where we also bought plastic balloons — oh the toxicity!). All of the Cokes sold then were in glass bottles (Is anyone young enough not to remember this era??) so if you wanted to “take out”, the tindera would give it in plastic (as in plasteek!) so you wouldn’t have to pay the bottle deposit. As years went on (and the world thought landfills seemed limitless), Coke came up with several packaging options and the glass bottle slowly faded away. Although they still sell in glass, Coke in PET packaging or aluminum cans is probably more popular than the glass versions.
Do you notice the difference, though, when you drink Coke from a glass bottle vs. a PET plastic bottle vs. a can vs. a plastic cup from McDo? In the U.S., they say the ingredients are different for the glass vs. the plastic. One has corn syrup, the other does not. However, in the Philippines, ARE the ingredients different? I think glass tastes better because it’s a more stable material. Several sites have studied how the liquid contents of a container can be affected by the material of the packaging.
Physics Forums has a thread on this topic where you can see several geeks (I love geeky fora!) talk about how “containers impart some flavor, except for glass.”
The U.S. Department of Energy says “Plastic containers also affect flavor strongly — not only do flavors leach out of the plastic, but some components of beverages will leach into plastic as well (the oils that give orange juice its fresh flavor can bind tightly to plastic).”
This leaching of plastic into the liquid can also cause leaching of harmful chemicals like BPA and other endocrine disruptors, as some Harvard studies have shown. Apparently, BPA is also present in canned drinks because it is used for the seams of the cans.
Soooo, if I’m going to drink Coke (which I’m just doing once a week at most now), I think the choice should be glass-bottled Coke — for both taste and health reasons. (What restaurant has bottled Coke I don’t know so maybe this is my way of quitting Coke forever.) As for water, really, after constantly drinking my water from glass, I cannot stand the taste of plastic bottled water anymore. Blech.
We use Aquasana bottles (ours are the bigger ones) to store our filtered water in the refrigerator and to bring around with me. (Stainless containers are good too.)
As for Auntie Anne’s, I still like their pretzels but I don’t order lemonade anymore.