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Warning for any aluminum can pot users
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Rick Dreher
(halfturbo) - MLife

Locale: Northernish California
Re: wow on 04/04/2008 11:08:30 MDT Print View

I've just discovered a heavy backpack can kill.
Coupled, evidently, with a rare case of too much beer.

David Lewis
(davidlewis) - MLife

Locale: Nova Scotia, Canada
Re: wow on 04/04/2008 18:46:54 MDT Print View

The opinions about risk management have been beaten to death. We get it. No need for everyone to add their own analogy. And I don't disagree with any of those opinions either! But you know... a little less crowing and a little more facts would be more productive and I'm sure the original poster would appreciate it too. I'd be interested to know if the lining in aluminum cans (specifically Heineken cans) contains BPA. Almost no chance that would stop me from using it to boil my water... but regardless... facts are a good (and interesting) thing. Yet another soliloquy about how it's more dangerous to breathe the air (yup) or eat cheese whiz (no kidding) than drink from an aluminum can... not so interesting.

David Lewis
(davidlewis) - MLife

Locale: Nova Scotia, Canada
Some Info on 04/04/2008 18:58:58 MDT Print View

Ok... I reviewed that link from the second post in this thread. I still can't find out for sure if all beverage can coatings include BPA (I found one google hit that said "some" or "many" of them do while ALL food cans do)... but there were a few interesting points on that page...

1. Using appropriate analytical methods, no BPA was detected from beverage/beer cans with a limit of detection of 5 parts per billion. Bisphenol A migration levels from food cans averages 37 parts per billion.

So... no BPA detected in beverage cans.

2. The estimated daily intake of BPA from canned food and beverages is over 450 times lower than the maximum acceptable or reference dose for BPA of 0.05 milligrams per kilogram body weight per day.

So... you'd have to eat 450 cans of food per day to get your daily BPA dosage over the "safe" level of 5 parts per billion.

Edited by davidlewis on 04/04/2008 18:59:42 MDT.

Max Hoagland
(maxhoagland) - F
Re: Some Info on 04/04/2008 20:08:04 MDT Print View

Thanks for keeping us on track David.

I stated before my skepticism about how truthful information is about BPAs that comes from a site financed by the American Plastics Council (part of the American Chemistry Council, in case anyone was wondering), which is a group financed by plastic and other chemical industries. This is where those "plastic makes it possible" commercials and ad campaigns come from.

That being said, EVERY aluminum can does have a plastic lining (which do contain BPAs). Here is a popular picture from google that shows the lining of the can once the aluminum has been removed.Plastic lining

And again, your body cannot pass plastic. Once you ingest it, it stays in your body.

"Health effects attributed to endocrine disrupting compounds include a range of reproductive problems (reduced fertility, male and female reproductive tract abnormalities, and skewed male/female sex ratios, loss of fetus, menstrual problems, changes in hormone levels; early puberty; brain and behavior problems; impaired immune functions; and various cancers." (

Plastic is an endocrine disruptor! So for those of you that think you have to eat over 50 kg of BPA a day (the considered safe amount to ingest by the EPA) to see health risks, you're wrong. Not only is it not uncommon to ingest over 10 kg a day, but if you take into account how many days you live in your life - that's a lot of endocrine disruptors in your body.

Demand your food be wrapped in containers without known toxins!

And don't use aluminum cans to boil water in!

Rog Tallbloke
(tallbloke) - F

Alternatives? on 04/04/2008 21:00:33 MDT Print View

Ok, so I've removed the BPA laden lining from my aluminium pot. But wait a minute, aluminium ingestion is associated with alzheimers disease.


Any problems with Titanium?

On a lighter note, 5 parts per billion is a lot less than max's 10kg a day. Eating that much will certainly increase your packweight and bodyweight.

hat does BPA stand for again?

Billionth Perennial Ambiguity?

JR Redding
(GrinchMT) - F
Silliness (in my nicest humble opinion) on 04/08/2008 22:06:20 MDT Print View

Someone asked if anyone had long term experience with the aluminum cans. I didn't see any response to that so I thought I would offer one.

I have been using the Heineken 24 ounce in a variety of ways and tests now for the past 8-9 months. I have a couple of them that got way too overheated during outdoor snow tests (flames from stove crawling too high) wherein the outside and the inside of the pit got discolored. However, no material came off. Regardless, I relegated those particular pots to the testing only pile. I have 3 or 4 that we have been using steadily on our trips since February that are just fine.

I realize there are a great deal of opinions on this plastic topic but, I eat from freezerbags, and I boil my water in a Heineken pot. I have been in remission from Non Hodkins Lymphoma now for 7 years. Do you honestly think it really matters anymore? Alot of you are probably the same people that go and purchase ground beef from a grocery store. Got nay idea what's in that? Or how about that water your drinking? How many parts per million of anti depressants and other drugs does it contain?

Ya know, since my cancer battle a long time ago, I don't really care that much about every scenario there is. All I do is try to eat as healthy as I can and live as clean a life as I can. That's all that matters.

Bozeman, MT

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Re: Some Info on 04/09/2008 01:49:21 MDT Print View

> Not only is it not uncommon to ingest over 10 kg a day,
Ah ... has someone got the units wrong here? I don't think many people on this planet would ingest 10 kg of FOOD per day, let alone that much plastic!

> And again, your body cannot pass plastic. Once you ingest it, it stays in your body.
It would help if you could give a reference for this rather extreme claim. The body is very good at getting rid of all sorts of things. Slowly maybe, but enzymes are very clever things.

> I stated before my skepticism about how truthful information is about BPAs that comes from a site financed by the American Plastics Council (part of the American Chemistry Council, in case anyone was wondering),
I agree entirely with a healthy dose of cynicism, but in fact industry organisations like that do have to be a bit carefull these days about what they publish. Organisations like the FDA and EPA can and do prosecute. Just read carefully.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Alternatives? on 04/09/2008 01:57:33 MDT Print View

> But wait a minute, aluminium ingestion is associated with alzheimers disease.
Another urban myth.

ONE (note: ONE) research paper claimed that aluminium had been found in Alzheimers plaques. In true human mass-hysteria fashion this precipitated a landslide of 'ban aluminium from cooking' messages.

More careful research in the form of many studies, which of course never got the same treatment in the popular press, found zero correlation between aluminium and Alzheimers. Odd?

Then some very careful research found that the aluminium which had been found in the plaques tested had been put in there as a contaminant during sample preparation AFTER the patient had died. Do you think this got the same degree of publicity in the popular press? Of course not. We love our urban myths too much.


darren stephens
(darren5576) - F

Locale: Down Under
what was this thread about again? on 04/09/2008 14:20:07 MDT Print View

Ill Have to remember not to get caught around the campfire with you cheery lot...

Max Hoagland
(maxhoagland) - F
Re: Re: Re: Some Info on 04/09/2008 19:23:46 MDT Print View

kg = mg/kg or ppm (sorry)

"And again, your body cannot pass all *plastics"
Sorry about that, meant to say BPA, not plastic. Why: BPAs are endocrine disruptors, which stay in your body. Reference: Rachel Carson's Silent Spring (granted she never uses the term endocrine disruptors; I don't think the term was around back then.)

The skepticism comes from the fact that the American Chemistry Council gives money to the U.S. congress.

Charles Mason
(guesting) - F
The real issue on 04/09/2008 19:48:15 MDT Print View

There are three diversions on health and safety issues which usually come up. Firstly the jokes which are not funny and tedious. Secondly the personal philosophies of life and look at 'devil-may-care' brave me 'life-is-short' attitude which are worse by being unintelligent, boring and irresponsible considering numerous historic cases of ignorance. Finally monetary motivations which make individuals or organizations put the lives of others at risk even when the issue is not exactly related to their specific product(s). This unsightly solidarity of greed applies evenly from large corporations to home/cottage industries.

Heineken has been silent on the use of their pots for cooking. They make no noticeable money from people cooking with their pots. I assume they prefer it never happened. However if they announce that cooking with plastic which is in their linings is hazardous , then that would be a negative health association in the zeitgeist with their brand that they could do well without. Even if %99.99 of their sales has nothing to do with people ripping open the top and cooking with the disposable part-plastic can. So their silence is understandable as is the silence of people out there making small amounts on the sales of the cans as pots and happy to continue to do so even if it is a potential risk to their customers. No surprises there. However the real issue is:

Since: storage, usage (eating out of and stirring and contact with hot food), cooking and finally washing up scrapes the plastic lining, these particles will unavoidably end up in the people using them. And thanks to the poster above, we now know these particles will not be passed by the body but are permanently absorbed which is frankly shocking. Even if they are not carcinogenic in all cases once the absorbed doses build up over time (highly unlikely), they can not be ruled out from causing other diseases in some cases if not many by regular users given enough time.

It is clear to me that as a fairly educated conscientious community, if we don't raise the alarm no one will. And that many future cases of diseased users will be on our conscience.

David Lewis
(davidlewis) - MLife

Locale: Nova Scotia, Canada
Re: The real issue on 04/09/2008 20:22:58 MDT Print View

So... any thoughts on how to remove the lining? We're just boiling water... most of us... so we don't really need a 'freshness' lining.

darren stephens
(darren5576) - F

Locale: Down Under
Conspiracy on 04/09/2008 21:26:56 MDT Print View

Have people started re joining BPL under a different name in order to hide there identity or is all this paranoia just rubbing off ????

Max Hoagland
(maxhoagland) - F
Re: Conspiracy on 04/09/2008 21:46:43 MDT Print View

I'll tell you what is a conspiracy: the person who started this post only created it so that all of you guys will ditch your aluminum cans and but really expensive titanium pots from BPL!!!!!

Daniel Strange
(strangdj) - F
Cooking vs. storage on 04/10/2008 12:09:53 MDT Print View

There is a pretty big difference between storing food in plastic and cooking/boiling in plastic. The "leach" or chemical diffusion rate increases dramatically with temperature. I doubt any of the tests paid for by the Chemical Industry were performed at anything resembling boiling. At one point in time I did published research on the leaching of lead from leaded crystal containers. I would not hesitates to drink wine from a leaded glass but I would NOT boil anything acidic in them! You can easily exceed the recommended exposure limits. The amount of lead release at 90C is about 20x the lead release at 22C. (And, much like BPA, the "exposure limits" are entirely arbitrary since there actually is no known "safe" dose).

I don't microwave my food in plastic containers and I wouldn't boil in a plastic container either. Maybe overly cautious, but hey it's not too hard to find substitutes.


I just found a link which says that BPA leaches out of polycarbonate bottles 55 times faster using boiling water instead of room temperature.

Edited by strangdj on 04/10/2008 12:27:11 MDT.

Joshua Mitchell
(jdmitch) - F

Locale: Kansas
Re: Cooking vs. storage on 04/10/2008 12:57:54 MDT Print View

Rule of thumb (from my Chemical Engineering education), the rate at which chemical reactions proceed approximately double with every 10 Deg F increase in temperature.

Obviously, this is a rule of thumb, and really only works for smaller increases in temp (say 90 Deg to 120 Deg) but it's a good way to highlight what D Strange mentioned.

I'm not surprised at all that the 'junk' leaches at 55 times the normal rate at boiling (actually its far less than what I would knee jerk believe if someone told me as 212-80=130, 2^13 > 8000).

Dylan Skola
(phageghost) - F

Locale: Southern California
Just to clarify for an earlier poster on 04/10/2008 13:38:51 MDT Print View

The plastic _particles_ produced by mechanical action are not going to be "absorbed" by the body. The digestive system only absorbs small molecules, which is why proteins and fats have to be enzymatically digested and emulsified before they can be absorbed across the intestinal mucosa. Any particle of plastic is going to be absolutely huge at these scales and should be passed without a hitch (you know where to look for them).

The issue is individual _molecules_ of plastic in solution, which can potentially be absorbed. BPA is one of those compounds, as it does slowly dissolve or "leach" into water. It is not present in all plastics. The presence or absence of BPA, rate of leaching under various conditions, and the health significance of such leaching are the relevant issues. Merely scraping up your pot isn't going to embed plastic particles permanently in your fat tissues or anywhere else. It may, however, increase the rate of leaching by presenting more plastic surface area to the water. These particles may leach the BPA they contain (if any) more rapidly under acidic digestive conditions, but from what I remember for polycarbonate, BPA is actually much more soluble under alkaline conditions than acidic.

Now back to our broadcast . . .

Edited by phageghost on 04/10/2008 13:42:22 MDT.

Ryan Gardner
(splproductions) - F - M

Locale: Salt Lake City, UT
Info... on 04/19/2008 18:17:33 MDT Print View

I didn't bother posting it because I assumed others would have already jumped on it, but on Yahoo (they have those articles) there was an article about BPA's in food containers and some recent studies done. The next day there was an article saying that Nalgene is phasing out their BPA containing bottles.

David Lewis
(davidlewis) - MLife

Locale: Nova Scotia, Canada
Re: Info... on 04/20/2008 06:38:49 MDT Print View

Do you have a link Ryan?

Max Planck
(maxplanck) - F
Re: Time Will Tell on 04/20/2008 07:08:06 MDT Print View

"Some of us read about the fabulous Roman aqueducts and plumbing systems -- the most advanced in the world in their time -- and shake our heads at how the Romans could be 'stupid enough' to line some of the pipes and containers with lead! I bet some Romans had suspected something wrong all along, but the experts of their day didn't have the technology to detect the cause/effect of lead.

Who's to know if a few hundred years into the future, folks will shake their heads at the way we poison ourselves -- what with cell phone radiation, plastic and aluminum "food grade" containers, etc.??? Unfortunately, we don't have definitive ways of measuring the cause/effect today -- nor do we have any safe/economical ways of replacing/eliminating plastics and metals..."

Oh, there are ways. One of these ways is called "scientific experiment," or "rational inquiry." These experiments are being performed all the time, and the results are published in peer reviewed scientific journals. The Journal of Cancer Epidemiology, Nature, etc.

Peer reviewed scientific journals are the closest you can get to the truth, short of performing your own experiments, as any student of science will tell you. (I know, I majored in Chemistry and minored in Mathematics.)

If you read many of the peer reviewed scientific journal articles that have been published regarding human health, and compare what these studies suggest with what government/industry recommends, you will be shocked.

It's true that industry/government tries to squash such information, and that honest studies of potentially hazardous consumer product materials/ingredients tend not to receive funding, but such studies occur nonetheless, due to some Universities' and Professors' commitment to scientific and academic integrity.

Edited by maxplanck on 04/20/2008 07:41:02 MDT.