July 08, 2020 3 min read
Here at My Little Panda, the benefits of bamboo seem so obvious to us because we work with it day in and day out, but sometimes we have to remind ourselves that not everyone is as obsessed with this fast-growing grass as we are, and we quite often get questions about it. Why not use disposable cutlery? Why not just carry kitchenware from home? etc. One such question we get asked all the time though, is why bamboo over stainless steel? This is, after all, what most household kitchenware is made of. Well, we’ve taken it upon ourselves to answer the questions of bamboo vs. stainless steel.
"It has been found that, during cooking, small amounts of nickel and chromium can leach out of stainless steel cookware and, whilst a connection between cookware and cancer has not yet been established, it is known that nickel can contribute to cancer risks."
Environment Stainless Steel has long been seen as a more environmentally-conscious option than plastic, and in many ways it is. However, that doesn’t mean that is the epitome of greenness. After all, being a family of metals means that parts of it have to be mined out of the ground, creating a lot of waste, and the production process of extracting this ore uses incredible amounts of energy. Bamboo, being an entirely natural product, does not have this problem. Our bamboo uses no fertilisers or pesticides either, remaining 100% organic throughout. It continues to grow once harvested too, so does not leave a permanent loss of resources or scarring of the landscape.
Rapid Regrowth Bamboo, on the other hand, is a rapidly growing plant from the grass family, and whilst they also form carbon sinks, they continue to grow up to three metres a year when harvested, making them a far more sustainable material to use in the production of cutlery.
Safe To Use Different types of stainless steel include elements such as carbon, nitrogen, aluminium, silicon, titanium, nickel, copper, selenium, niobium and molybdenum. Whilst stainless steel itself is considered biologically inert, thus safe to use in cookware and kitchen utensils, it’s composite parts can cause harm. It has been found that, during cooking, small amounts of nickel and chromium can leach out of stainless steel cookware and, whilst a connection between cookware and cancer has not yet been established, it is known that nickel can contribute to cancer risks. Our bamboo uses no chemicals in its production and has no varnish or other coating so is entirely safe to use when cooking and eating.
“...for regular usage stainless steel is heavy, and also makes a clunking, jangly noise when rolling around loose inside a lunch box or bag. . "
Practical Durable and easy to store at home, one question we receive every now and then is, “why not just take cutlery from home with you?” which is a reasonable response if you’re doing it for a one-off. But for regular usage stainless steel is heavy, and also makes a clunking, jangly noise when rolling around loose inside a lunch box or bag. Far more lightweight, and coming in its own roll-up pouch is our lunch set, that is compact, keeps all your cutlery together and weighs just 122grams. If you wanted something even lighter for travel or greater portability, our compact set is just 72 grams.
Biodegradable Stainless steel is non-degradable, meaning that it doesn’t rust (unless damaged or disturbed) and doesn’t degrade. Whilst this sounds great for a long-lasting, durable product but if broken or damaged, it will not break down when thrown away. This is great in terms of recycling since the material can be reused again and again, but for the parts that make it to the landfill, it just sits there forevermore. Our biodegradable bamboo means that it breaks down entirely when disposed of and continues its natural lifecycle when no longer needed.
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