Paper-based Baking Containers, The Aluminium Alternative

Not too long ago, we wrote about a health safety concern regarding the use of aluminum-based products for baking. Today's post will highlight paper-based products; the alternative to aluminum-based food containers. By the way, there's an interesting tale on the origins of the words 'aluminum', 'aluminium', and 'alumium' (we're using 'Aluminium' for the post's title, a marketing strategy for sure, and 'Aluminum' throughout this post content - the truth is, those word-correction underlines are a pain to see).

Through a quick survey, non-toxic paper baking containers do exist in the market. A recent visit to Ikea's famous Swedish Restaurant in Cheras also seems to confirm this.

Chicken lasagna prepared in a paper-based food container.
Ikea Malaysia, Cheras.

The Pros and Cons of Paper-based Baking Containers

From the lens of an environmentalist, it would be witless to go up against paper-based food containers. Considering that aluminiums take a lot longer to decompose, papers seem to be the logical choice. 

However, there are two primary con factors as to why paper may not be the ultimate choice. The first is the fact that specially designed paper-based products have a heat limit threshold of about 220 degrees Celcius (which, on the contrary, in our opinion, is more than enough to bake casserole dishes). Aluminiums have a heat threshold way beyond the paper-based benchmark. 

The second con argument is that paper-based products are not so eco-friendly - especially when vast amounts are required. An unreasonable and unmanaged production can contribute to widespread deforestation. Then again, efforts to slow down are on the way. We are taught consciously and subconsciously to recycle, but whether we do it is completely in our hands. Do we walk the talk, or simply just talk the talk?

Fortunately, the pro factors of using paper-based food containers can outweigh that of aluminium. It can be because educating, executing, and enforcing environmental efforts have yet to be seen. Now, more aggressive than ever. Compared to their aluminium-based counterparts paper-based products are more:
  • Biodegradable;
  • Compostable;
  • Eco-friendly - given that their usage is regulated and complimented with recycling efforts;
Wallahu A'lam.

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