Pick-ups at Upper Meadows Farms’ CSAs and farmers markets are strictly BYOB: Bring your own box, bring a bag, and bring home the harvest of the moment. This avoids the whole paper vs. plastic dilemma and, according to a new study, a lot of dangerous chemicals.
The Web site Daily Green recently reported that the substances used to create grease-resistant food packaging are breaking down and reappearing as harmful chemicals in human blood. These chemicals, known as PFOS and PFOA, are already on the radar screen of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency because they have been found to create fertility problems in women and other problems in lab animals. The EPA has asked companies to voluntarily end the use of PFOS and PFOA by 2015. But here’s the catch: PFOS and PFOA are not being used to make the food packaging. Instead, this new study has found that they are occurring as the packaging materials–known as polyfluoroalkyl phosphoric acid diesters (diPAPs) — break down inside our bodies. Yuck.
Meanwhile, back on the farm, I need to make a request: If you buy Upper Meadows Farm eggs, please bring back the empty cartons. It will keep paper out of the waste stream, and a whole lot of good organic eggs coming our way.