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Plastic Bottles

A plastic bottle is a bottle constructed from high-density or low density plastic. Plastic bottles are typically used to store liquids such as water, soft drinks, motor oil, cooking oil, medicine, shampoo, milk, and ink. The size ranges from very small bottles to large carboys. Consumer blow molded containers often have integral handles or are shaped to facilitate grasping.[2][3]

Plastic Bottles


Plastic was invented in the 19th century and was originally used to replace common materials such as ivory, rubber, and shellac.[4] Plastic bottles were first used commercially in 1947, but remained relatively expensive until the early 1950s when high-density polyethylene was introduced.[5] They quickly became popular with both manufacturers and customers because compared to glass bottles, plastic bottles are lighter, cheaper and easier to transport.[6][7][8] However, the biggest advantage plastic bottles have over their glass counterparts is their superior resistance to breakage, in both production and transportation. Except for wine and beer, the food industry has largely replaced glass bottles with plastic bottles.

There is ongoing concern as to the use of plastics in consumer food packaging solutions, environmental impact of the disposal of these products, as well as concerns regarding consumer safety. Karin Michaels, Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School, suggests that toxins leaching from plastics might be related to disorders in humans such as endocrine disruption.[11] Aluminum and cyanide were found as trace elements in the examined samples but they are considered to be toxic elements according to the United States food and drug administration FDA. In the United States, plastic water bottles are regulated by the FDA which also inspects and samples bottled water plants periodically. Plastic water bottle plants hold a low priority for inspection due to a continuously good safety record.[12] In the past, the FDA maintained that there was a lack of human data showing plastics pose health problems. However, in January 2010, the FDA reversed its opinion saying they now have concerns about health risks.[11] An article published on 6 November 2017 in Water Research reported on the content of microplastics in mineral waters packed in plastic or glass bottles, or beverage cartons.[13] In 2018, research conducted by Sherri Mason from the State University of New York in Fredonia revealed the presence of polypropylene, polystyrene, nylon and polyethylene terephthalate microparticles in plastic bottles. Polypropylene was hereby found to be the most common polymeric material (54%) and nylon the second most abundant (16%) polymeric material. The study also mentioned that polypropylene and polyethylene are polymers that are often used to make plastic bottle caps. Also, 4% of retrieved plastic particles were found to have signatures of industrial lubricants coating the polymer.[14] The research was reviewed by Andrew Mayes of the University of East Anglia (UEA) School of Chemistry[15] The European Food Safety Authority suggested most microplastics are excreted by the body, however the UN Food and Agriculture Organization warned that it is possible that the smallest particles (

An accordion bottle or collapsible bottle is a plastic bottle designed to store darkroom chemicals or any other chemical that is highly susceptible to oxidation. They work by being able to squeeze down to remove excess air from the bottle to extend the life of the product.[19] An alternate benefit is minimizing storage, transportation, or disposal space when the bottle is empty or as the content is being dispersed, for example with water bottles used by hikers. Collapsing can also keep foods fresher.[20]

What sets bottles apart from other plastic products born in the post-World War II rise of consumerism is the sheer speed with which the beverage bottle, now ubiquitous around the world, has shifted from convenience to curse. The transition played out in a single generation.

By 2016, the year sales of bottled water in the United States officially surpassed soft drinks, the world had awakened to the burgeoning crisis of plastic waste. The backlash against the glut of discarded bottles clogging waterways, polluting the oceans and littering the interior has been swift. Suddenly, carrying plastic bottles of water around is uncool.

Once bottles have become trash, entrepreneurs around the world are turning them into printer ink cartridges, fence posts, roofing tiles, carpets, flooring, and boats, to name only a few items. Even houses have been constructed from bottles. The latest is a three-story modern on the banks of the Meteghan River in Nova Scotia, promoted as able to withstand a Category 5 hurricane. It only took 612,000 bottles.

Recycling rates remain low. In 2016 fewer than half the bottles bought worldwide were collected. In the United States, new PET bottles contain only 7 percent recycled content, said Susan Collins, executive director of the Container Recycling Institute. Although consumers of soft drinks dutifully returned glass bottles and collected the refund in the decades before PET was invented, beverage companies have long strongly promoted recycling, and vigorously opposed bottle deposit legislation, arguing bottle bills cost them too much money.

PepsiCo pledged to increase recycled content in all its plastic packaging 25 percent by 2025. Nestle Waters vowed to make all of its packaging recyclable by 2025 and increase recycled content in bottles to 35 percent by 2025 globally and to 50 percent in the United States, focusing on Poland Spring. Additionally, recycled content for European brands will increase to 50 percent by 2025.

The Purifyou is made of borosilicate glass, and that makes it special. Borosilicate glass resists thermal shock. This means if you take the bottle out of a hot dishwasher and fill it with cold or room-temperature water, it will resist shattering better than bottles made of common soda-lime glass.

This bottle weighs only 6.6 ounces. The textured, contoured design makes the Thermos easy to hold, too, and you can effortlessly drop ice cubes into the wide mouth. And after you reattach the lid, the spout is simple to drink out of. This design is a winning combination, the same as on a similar, insulated pick, the Takeya bottle. Also, the Thermos is made from Eastman Tritan BPA-free plastic.

We like bottles with the right proportions, and we have to believe designers have noticed the awkwardness of the 24-ounce size. For instance, in 2020 the Takeya Actives became available in a 22-ounce size (slightly smaller than the 24-ounce version, which had been our previous pick). Similarly, 32-ounce bottles are most useful when they are wide and squat instead of tall. When we make recommendations for larger capacities, such design concerns are a big part of what we take into consideration.

Other bottles performed poorly in our insulation tests, including the 25-ounce Fifty/Fifty Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel, the Laken Thermo Classic (its contents rose by 20.1 degrees during our test), and the Contigo Autoseal Chill.

Our 2017 travel pick, the Platypus Meta, tends to develop a small hole in its bottom, which renders it useless for carrying water. Our 2016 pick, the Platypus SoftBottle, is watertight but floppy, as all collapsible bag-bottles are.

The Pogo plastic water bottle is basic and functional. We like the lid (again, just as with the Takeya) and the flip top that closes over the spout. We encountered no leaks, but at the time we tested this bottle, it had a bad Fakespot rating (a D). As of March 2023, the rating is a B, so we plan to look at it again.

Governor Newsom signed into law Assembly Bill 793 (Ting and Irwin, Chapter 115, Statutes of 2020) on September 24, 2020, which establishes recycled content standards for plastic beverage containers subject to the California Refund Value (CRV). The law requires a postconsumer plastic recycled content standard of 15 percent beginning January 1, 2022, increasing to 25 percent on 2025 and 50 percent on 2030.

The law will help improve the market for recycled plastic by increasing the demand, thus increasing the scrap value of the material for recycling centers operating in the Beverage Container Recycling Program BCRP.

Non-compliant beverage manufacturers will be assessed penalties that will be deposited into the Recycling Enhancement Penalty Account. Funds from this account could be used, subject to appropriation by the Legislature, to support the recycling, infrastructure, collection, and processing of plastic beverage containers in the state. If the Legislature makes an appropriation for this purpose before June 15, 2027, CalRecycle may conduct a study of plastic markets.

In addition, the law requires plastic material reclaimers to report empty plastic beverage containers collected and sold. It also requires manufacturers of postconsumer recycled plastic to report the amount of food-grade and bottle-grade plastic material sold in the state.

The report is due March 1st each year for the previous calendar year. The PRC 14549.3 requirement for beverage manufacturers to annually report virgin plastic and postconsumer recycled plastic usage has not changed. AB 793 amends the law to require reporting by pounds and resin type.

A beverage is defined in PRC 14504. A beverage manufacturer is defined in PRC 14506 as any person who bottles, cans, or otherwise fills beverage containers, or imports filled beverage containers, for sale to distributors, dealers, or consumers. If you are uncertain if you meet the definition of a beverage manufacturer or if your beverage is subject to CRV, please contact our Registration Unit via phone at (916) 323-1835 or via email at

During the 2005 legislative session, the N.C. General Assembly passed House Bill 1465, banning plastic bottles from disposal effective Oct. 1, 2009. The law does not apply to containers that are intended for use in the sale and distribution of motor oil or plastic pesticide bottles. 041b061a72


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