Glass Baby Bottles Hit The Market To Answer Concerned Parents' Fears Of Plastic

Earlier this month, several consumer groups announced that heated plastic baby bottles leach bisphenol A “in amounts that were within the range shown to cause harm in animal studies.” Now a reader writes in to tell us that companies are already starting to respond to the issue with announcements that they’ll be releasing glass bottles in addition to plastic versions.

David writes, “I’d be interested to hear if Babies R Us and other retailers (or the bottle companies) would offer an exchange to concerned parents.” Somehow we doubt that will happen unless there’s an official plastic bottle recall in the future.

“Plastic baby bottles may pose danger” [MarketWatch]

RELATED
Press Release: “Dr. Brown’s New Glass, Polypropylene Bottles Provide More Options For Parents” [Dr. Brown's]
“Chemicals In Baby Products May Be Dangerous”
(Really cute baby photo: pfly)

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  1. CaliforniaCajun says:

    GLASS!

    GLASS?

    Oh my God! My baby could drop it and be CUT BY THE GLASS! That’s almost as bad as being poisoned by Chinese plastic! OH GAAAAAHHHHDDDD!

    It is DANGEROUS!

    The American Consumer. Always spending, never satisfied. Isn’t it a beautiful thing?

  2. n/a says:

    I couldve sworn about 1970-1980s that they made baby bottles that were made out of glass?

  3. forgottenpassword says:

    how about making glass-lined plastic bottles?

  4. ToadKillerDog says:

    We need Stainless steel bottles with recycled plastic coatings. Something for everybody.

  5. lockdog says:

    Glass baby bottles are seriously hard to break. Hurl them at a brick wall and maybe they’ll crack. That glass is thick and heavy. But a glass bottle (well weighted with milk) would make an awesome projectile in the hands of a toddler. My little boy’s aim isn’t that great, but I’d fear for my shins and my drywall. Mom (over my shoulder) also points out that most kids go through a stage where they like to hit their parents, often on the head, and often with whatever is in hand. That would have to leave mark.

  6. JackHandey says:

    Plastic softeners will be the “lead” of the future…

    Currently everyone grabs the pitchforks and torches when they hear about lead, but no one really thinks about the compounds in plastics which often come into contact with their food or water. (food can linings, dental fillings, water bottles, teflon coatings… the list goes on.)

    Thanks for posting this, Consumerist!

  7. chersolly says:

    How about breastfeeding the baby?

  8. azntg says:

    The Manufacturing Line

    Next Up: neoprene covered glass baby bottles!

    Conditions for Production: Class action from damages caused by shattered glass.

  9. crazypants says:

    All my kids have glass baby bottles, plastic is just downright icky. IMO, more crap should be made out of glass – from water bottles to milk jugs.

    Furthermore, it’s my understanding that glass is cheaper to produce than plastic, as it comes from silica sand and not oil.

  10. charodon says:

    There’s a reason why everyone shifted away from glass bottles in the first place. I don’t know what it was, but I suppose we’re about to find out.

  11. crazypants says:

    @lockdog: Glass baby bottles are made out of the same stuff that Pyrex measuring cups are made out of – strong as the dickens.

    Ever tried to break a Pyrex measuring cup?

  12. crazypants says:

    @charodon: Because plastic is lighter and people are lazy.

  13. marike says:

    I’ve been using glass bottles (evenflo) and plastic w/ inserts for my last 3 kids and both are great alternatives to plastic. The glass bottles are extremely durable and hard to break.

    This isn’t a new story by any means if I read about it back in 2003. I mean, I’ve been using glass bottles for the last 5 years and glass bottles are now hitting the market?

  14. crazypants says:

    Babies R Us sells them (glass baby bottles) in six packs pretty darn cheaply.

  15. no.no.notorious says:

    my dad broke a glass bottle when he was a baby and still has gotten permanent scars on his face bc of it

  16. Mills says:

    I want a clear aluminum version!

  17. wring says:

    exclusive breastfeeding will solve all these problems.

  18. pfeng says:

    There’s always breastfeeding ;) Of course, even my breastfed kids used bottles (filled with expressed milk) on occasions when I wanted to get away for longer than they could survive without eating. And we used Avent (which is on the list).

    Considering how infrequently they ended up with bottles instead of breast, I won’t worry much. But, I WILL be getting glass bottles if we have any additional kids.

    @Mills: ooooooh, me too :)

  19. deleterious says:

    My kids have broken a few of the Evenflo glass bottles but it’s always when he drops them on the supermarket floor or cement. Then, it’s always a clean break — two pieces and no shards of glass everywhere. They’ve survived hundreds of drops on wood floors.

  20. deleterious says:

    I forgot to mention that Evenflo has the ounces marked in glass also, so the markings don’t wear off like the Dr Brown’s ounce markings do.

  21. North of 49 says:

    and our kids are too old to use the glass bottles. Oh well.

  22. Shadowfire says:

    @wring: Not everyone can breastfeed.

    I’m just waiting for the day that everything is outlawed, because everything can give you cancer. Will there be any product that is safe for us?

  23. Joe says:

    So the plastic bottles are dangerous when heated? Don’t heat them in the first place! We heated my oldest son’s bottles. Boy was that ever a pain in the ass. Everywhere you go, you have to find hot water. When my daughter was born, we said ‘screw that.’ We served her only room-temperature bottles, and she loved them and was no worse for the wear. Studies have been done that says formula temperature is totally arbitrary.

    As for breastfeeding, I think everyone agrees that it’s best. Unfortunately, for some women, my wife included, it’s extremely difficult, if not impossible to produce a sufficient quantity of milk.

  24. joebar says:

    Which glass object will break when the glass bottle gets thrown at my glass plasma TV?

  25. jaya9581 says:

    This “story” goes around every 12 months or so. I used to work at Babies R Us and we would always get panicked parents in droves after some magazine or another published an article about this.

    You would have to heat up the bottle quite a lot to make it dangerous, if it got dangerous at all.

    Further, you shouldn’t be heating a bottle anyway – room temperature or slightly warm is best, and the way most people do it is just by running it under hot water from your sink. Pretty much just as fast as a bottle warmer, your bottle is warm.

  26. blitzcat says:

    Glass you say? Calling the Chinese Poison Train! We need some leaded glass please…

  27. cynicalliberal says:

    You don’t need to use glass, there are plenty of other plastics that don’t contain BPA. (Polypropylene, polyethylene…) A lot of research is coming out on BPA so hopefully we’ll be able to better assess its risk soon.

  28. skeleem_skalarm says:

    I wouldn’t use plastic bottles for my son because I never felt like they got completely clean when I washed them. After reading the latest, I’m glad I always used glass.

  29. marsneedsrabbits says:

    @Joe:
    Not heating the bottles full of formula/milk/whatever isn’t a solution, because you still wash them in hot water.
    And when they are heated in the wash water, the Bisphenol-A still leeches out.

  30. Joe says:

    @marsneedsrabbits: So wash them in cold water. (j/k)

  31. misokitty says:

    As a nanny I have used both glass and plastic bottles. The only time a glass bottle has broken was when it was already cracked from the heat of the dishwasher and I didn’t realize it when I put it in the bottle warmer. Also babies should not be using bottles after the age of one so a toddler throwing a bottle wouldn’t be a problem if the child had a cup.

  32. deb35802 says:

    My son is almost 33 so its been a long time since I’ve had to buy baby bottles but when he was a baby I used Playtex Nursers if my memory is correct. They had a plastic (hard) outer container with plastic bags that you put inside and filled that with formula. They were highly touted by doctors back in the 1960′s and ’70′s cause as the baby drank the bag would collapse and keep air from getting into their stomach.

    It didn’t help my son any though as he had colic for the first 3 months of his life.

  33. eyebleave says:

    I exclusively breastfed, my daughter never had a bottle and she doesn’t know what to do with them when she’s playing with other kid’s baby dolls. I plan to do the same again with this new baby due in May.

    However, now that my little girl has “graduated” to a sippy cup I was concerned about this. There is no way I’m giving a toddler a glass to drink out of, but there are alternatives. We use the bornfree brand , they make bottles and sippy cups without BPA. We also looked at metal canteen types, but they were a lot more expensive and looked harder to clean.

  34. Angryrider says:

    Ah you Americans and your “concerns.”
    I was always taught since a young age TO NEVER HEAT UP PLASTIC! Screw the fact that it’s “microwaveable.” When you heat something up something is bound leach out, especially in the case of plastic.
    Buy glass or metal bottles, but! Don’t put the milk in the bottle and heat it! Heat it in a pan! THEN fill the bottle! Sheesh, “it has to be more convenient.”

  35. Benny Gesserit says:

    @Mills: No, that won’t work, the aluminum will give the baby Alzheimer’s!!!

    Seriously, though, it’s not a bad idea – but I’m betting people prefer the idea of clear glass or plastic containers. (Being able to see exactly what the baby’s drinking is a positive factor.)

  36. Superborty says:

    I highly suspect kids would have to drink from overheated bottles 24 hours a day for the first 10 years to get any ill effect. Can’t we somehow blame this problem on George Bush or global warming???

  37. Islandkiwi says:

    The point is that Bisphenol-A leaks into the milk, heated or not. It just leaks a lot faster when heated.

    My wife and I are using the Playtex Drop-Ins, which are bisphenol-a free. We looked into glass bottles but they seemed more expensive, and there would have been a lot more cleaning.

    Having fed my little girl from regular bottles, I do think the drop-ins result in less gas too. We’ve been very happy with them.

  38. TangDrinker says:

    For those of you who say “just don’t heat the bottles up” – easier said than done, esp for daycare. For all the places we looked at, you have to send your baby to day care with a full day’s supply of prepared bottles, which are stored in the fridge and then heated in a bottle warmer (sort of like a small crock-pot filled with water, NOT a microwave).

    We were able to get by with sending our son in with the glass until 7 or 8 months – when he started tossing them from the high chair. There are companies that now sell silicon sleeves you can place over the glass that prevents the glass from breaking (although we never had one break). We did end up going with a plastic bottle for day care – I think it was a gerber soft plastic brand that Z Recommends cleared (google their BPA reviews for safer options).

  39. @charodon: I think plastic was cheaper, faster, lighter, and more flexible than glass.

    Funny thing about plastic: Went to the Queen Mary in Long Beach, old cruise ship, Titanic era. Some of the rails were plastic. Asked about this, back at the time, plastic was new, and seen as a luxury, on par with rare wood.

    After a rash of children with cuts requiring stitches and walls in need of mending, they will call for the good old days of phthylates.

  40. gingerCE says:

    I actually still by milk in glass 1/2 gallon bottles (strauss) and the reason they continue to use glass is they claim it makes the milk taste better.

    I have to agree.

  41. gingerCE says:

    Btw the milk I buy you recycle the glass bottle (to the store you purchased it at) and they give you 1.25.

  42. Upsilon says:

    Sweet. I can’t wait to have children so that I can start teaching them how to make shivs at an early age. Thank you, Chinese plastic scare!

    ~Y

  43. pigeonpenelope says:

    @crazypants: yes, and silica is the most common element found in the earth’s crust so it is quite easy to get and more environmentally friendly to produce.

    i wish more things came in glass as it tastes so good when it comes in glass versus metal or plastic. omg milk in glass..so tasty.

  44. IrisMR says:

    I heard a doctor on the subject saying that the amount of the toxic matter that was released was so negligible it could be compared to a second in 35 years.

    Paranoid parents… CHILL DOWN! If you wanna be obnoxious, remember that you could ZOMG BREAK THE GLASS AND HURT ZEH BABY

  45. meeroom says:

    I LOVE diet coke in the teeny-weeny glass bottles, I think it tastes much better. Call me paranoid or whatever, but plastic freaks me out. With the schmutz that remains on it in the dishwasher, and the way tomato sauce stains it, and the mushy texture it gets when heated, I’d rather just use glass or ceramic.
    Plus, I live near the beach and there is hardly any sea glass to be found anymore, just swathes of plastic. Gross.

  46. Mr. Gunn says:

    cynicalliberal: Exactly.

    Use a hard plastic like polypropylene that doesn’t leach BPA. It blows my mind that they would even think to use a soft plastic when there are better options.

  47. Elvisisdead says:

    @crazypants: Jesus. Read up on how glass is made. It takes massive amounts of heat to make glass from sand, soda, and lime. That heat doesn’t come from the sun, sweetie. It comes from oxygen and natural gas. Where does natural gas come from? Oil fields and natural gas fields. Unless you’re buying your bottles from a colonial glass blower at Williamsburg, that’s how it’s made.

    Before you get all smug about being free from oil, track your product back to source.