Learn More about the materials our products are made from and some of the materials we refer to throughout the website as harmful chemicals. Healthy eating is more than making healthy food choices. The materials used to cook, store and serve our foods are equally important. The benefits of a healthy lifestyle start with education. Our goal is to provide you with the information needed to make healthy cookware choices for you and your family!
Fast-growing and renewable Acacia trees are ubiquitous in Asia and are prized for their rich brown-and-gold-hued lumber, a natural feature we embrace in each subtly unique acacia item. The hand-selected light and dark contrasting grain structure brings each piece to life. This medium-hard wood is perfect for kitchen implements and serving pieces, its natural oils resist moisture, and it gains in beauty as it is burnished by a lifetime of use. The skilled craftsmen in our small workshops take great pride in the work they do and it shines through as they transform raw slabs of this beautiful wood into the wonderful and useful items in our ever-growing acacia collection. All of our acacia items are finished in certified food-safe lacquer for durability ease of cleaning, and to maximize the natural beauty of the wood.
Bamboo is a type of grass and for that reason one of the fastest growing plants on the planet.
Some varieties of bamboo can grow at a rate of two feet a day. Of course, bamboo needs sunlight and ample water for this phenomenal growth rate to occur. Bamboo matures in three to five years. When compared to other soft-woods, which take ten to twenty years to mature, bamboo is a highly renewable resource for construction material.
Bamboo generates thirty-five (35%) percent more oxygen than trees. In the process it cleans the atmosphere of CO2 and purifies the soil. The roots help prevent erosion and run-off as well as providing shade, a sound barrier, and windbreak.
The Moso variety of bamboo we use is the hardest of the bamboo family; harder even than rock maple. It is also extremely durable and moisture resistant, making it perfect for kitchen implements. Bamboo is a fast growing, environmentally friendly grass that is harvested every few years without damaging the soil or landscape. We offer bamboo products in clean, natural blonde and rich, dark caramel, created by heating, which carbonizes the natural sugars in the grass for color through and through. Bamboo is great for the kitchen. Not only is it extremely durable, but also easily washable using warm soap and water. Bamboo maintains its finish well with occasional treatments of plain mineral oil.
What are Bioplastics?
Bioplastics are a “green” and sustainable alternative to traditional plastics, and are created using renewable resources like corn, tapioca, potatoes, sugar and algae.
Unlike traditional plastics, which are made using petroleum and other fossil fuels, BioPlastics support the earth by offering a reduced carbon footprint, and a reduced use of fossil resources. Bioplastics are 100% biodegradable, compostable, or recyclable.
The cost of BioPlastics is not dependent on the volatile and rising prices of crude oil, quickly making BioPlastics a popular, cost-effective alternative to traditional plastics.
A renewable resource is regenerated by natural processes at a rate comparable to its rate of degradation. The carbon content of such a polymer is derived from the short-term carbon cycle (expected time frame: 1 to 10 years). With long-term carbon cycles, the expected time frame for conversion of biomass in oil, gas and coal is one million years. The following figure illustrates the time frame difference in carbon regeneration for conventional plastics and BioPlastics.
Benefits of BioPlastics
Biodegradable products take much less time to break down after being discarded, if they haven’t been recycled, of course. What this means is that it gets absorbed in the earth, and there will no longer be tons of plastic dominating our landfills.
Biodegradable plastics are made from biomass, which is a completely renewable resource. It is an organic compound, which breaks down. There is plenty of it around the globe. Biomass includes trees, plants, grass, and all organic materials that decompose. This may even include animal fats, meats, and other tissues.
Biodegradable plastics are much better for the environment, because there is no harm done to the earth when recovering fossil fuels. Also, in this process there are very few greenhouse gas and harmful carbon emissions. Regular plastics need oil for their manufacturing, which pollutes the environment.
Biodegradable plastics need less than half the energy to produce than their non-biodegradable counterparts. This means that it is possible to make twice the amount of biodegradable packaging and biodegradable bags using the same amount of energy.
Traditional plastics are full of harmful by-products and chemicals, which are released during their breakdown process. Biodegradable plastics are completely safe and do not have any chemicals or toxins. This plastic harmlessly breaks down and gets absorbed into the earth. Such advantages of BioPlastics are of extreme importance, as the toxic plastic load on the earth is growing and at this rate will cause a whole range of problems for future generations.
Camphor Laurel Tree
Camphor Laurel trees are considered nuisance plants in Australia, where they are being actively eradicated to stop their encroachment on useful land; using this material for housewares is eco-intelligent material sourcing at its best! Camphor wood can show a wide variation in color, grain, and texture in a single board. Each item in this collection is handcrafted from this unique lumber source, and our craftsmen painstakingly dry, sort and laminate this unique wood to magnify its breadth of character. Along with beautiful grain and an enchanting scent, camphor laurel is very durable and it’s easy on your fine cutlery. Our camphor laurel wood cutting boards are hand sanded and finished with a simple oil finish and should be hand-washed with soap and warm water, then hand-dried. An occasional application of plain mineral oil will keep cutting boards beautiful and well conditioned. Salad bowls and servers are finished with a certified food-safe hand-washable lacquer for durability, and ease of cleaning.
What is Ceramic Coating?
Ceramic coating materials are inorganic, non-metallic materials that are processed and used at high temperatures. Ceramic coatings are typically made up of special compounds that possess stronger properties than regular coatings. They are made by slowly baking a mixture of ceramic powder and water or solvent onto a base of stainless steel or aluminum.
Among the properties in which ceramic coatings are known for include improved strength, hardness, elasticity, and oxidation resistance. They are also highly resistant to corrosive compounds. Oxidation resistance is the most important feature, as it keeps the product not only from breaking or being damaged, but also from rusting and other effects of oxidation due to exposure to various airborne agents. Compounds in ceramic coatings include carbides, borides, nitrides, and silicide’s that are hard enough to keep the material from accumulating residue.
Ceramic materials are harder and more resist to heat and frictions lasting longer than other materials. To make it usable with other materials, ceramic materials are generally coated on. For example, glaze is a simple ceramic coating, which makes porcelain tableware usage healthy and resistant to scratching.
Energy Efficient Appliances
Electronics, and especially appliances, can consume a lot of energy. Energy we use in our homes comes from power plants, which burn fossil fuel to power our electric products. Burning fossil fuels causes air pollution and contributes to smog, acid rain and global warming. Further reducing energy is a great way to help the environment, both by wasting fewer resources, and producing less waste.
Appliances are important in the function of every day life. Although appliances and the tasks they perform are essential, operating them can be very costly in energy usage. Making smart choices when buying any appliance can lower energy bills and save money over a lifetime. Not only will buying energy efficient appliances keep costly expenses down but it will benefit the environment as well.
There can be a significant difference in the energy consumption of appliances. Energy Guide labels are present on all major appliances to help select the most efficient models. The most efficient appliance will have certain features that should guide the purchaser to selecting the most efficient model with those features.
Cook with small appliances. Cook with your toaster oven, electric skillet and slow cooker for specialized jobs, rather than the range. Small appliances use less energy. If you are cooking a small amount of food or just heating a meal, consider using a microwave, toaster oven or slow cooker. They are much more energy efficient, and in some cases they are quicker.
Saving energy means more dollars in your pocket, but it is also a green initiative that we can all practice to save our valuable resources and be kinder to our environment.
Our Mango collection of stylish bowls, dishes, and trays are carved from mango trees grown in Thailand’s vast mango plantations. The Mango tree bears fruit for about 20 to 30 years, after which time it is cut down by the farmer to make room for new seedlings. The creamy, dense mango wood is then reclaimed by local craftsmen for carving into a wide variety of beautiful products. The artisans working mango wood pay careful attention to the individuality of each and every raw slab of wood that comes into their hands, and the results are wonderful. Each piece in this collection reminds one that each tree has a character and texture all its own.
What is Organic Cotton?
Very little is pure or natural about cotton when it is raised conventionally. Conventionally grown cotton consumes approximately 25% of the insecticides and more than 10% of the pesticides used in the world. Research shows that extensive and intensive use of synthetic fertilizers, soil additives, defoliants and other substances wreak terrible havoc on soil, water, air and many, many living things.
The alternative… Organic Cotton! Organic cotton is grown using methods and materials that have a low impact on the environment. Organic production systems replenish and maintain soil fertility, reduce the use of toxic and persistent pesticides and fertilizers, and build biologically diverse agriculture. Growing organically takes more time, requires more knowledge and skill, and, for now, costs more… But it's worth it.
The production of cotton has a huge impact on the world we live in. By choosing organically grown cotton, you can reap all the benefits of cotton’s beauty, comfort and strength while minimizing harm to people and the planet.
What is PFOA?
PFOA is an acronym for perfluorooctanoic acid, a synthetic (man-made) chemical that does not occur naturally in the environment. PFOA is sometimes called "C8." It has been used in the manufacture of such prominent consumer goods as Teflon and Gore-Tex.
PFOA persists indefinitely in the environment. It is a toxicant and carcinogen in animals.
Recently, scientists have found great concern as levels of PFOA have been commonly found in many humans across the globe and concerns abound how exposure to PFOA could affect people’s health. PFOA has been detected in the blood of more than 98% of the general US population in the low and sub-parts per billion range, and levels are higher in chemical plant employees and surrounding subpopulations. Exposure has been associated with increased cholesterol and uric acid levels, and recently higher serum levels of PFOA were found to be associated with increased risk of chronic kidney disease in the general United States population, consistent with earlier animal studies.
In 2004, the EPA took administrative action against DuPont (manufacturer of Teflon), accusing the company of failing to report risk of injury to human health and to the environment due to exposure to PFOA between the period of 1981 to 2001. Consequently, in 2005 DuPont paid a $10.25 million settlement for violating federal environmental statutes. In 2006, the EPA launched a PFOA stewardship program, inviting the 8 major fluoropolymer and telomer manufacturers to participate in eliminating the use of PFOA from emissions and product content by 2015.
The major health effect linked with Teflon is the potential release of dangerous fumes from coated pans that are overheated. These fumes can cause flu-like symptoms in humans (a condition known as polymer fume fever) and can be fatal to birds.
Some early studies have suggested that higher PFOA blood levels in humans may be linked with higher than normal cholesterol levels, thyroid disease, and reduced fertility. A study in the Human Reproduction journal confirmed some very real concerns with the product. This study established a link between PFOA, (the chemical in Teflon), and reproductive health in women. According to Enviroblog (the blog of the Environmental Working Group), “PFOA is [also] linked to birth defects, increased cancer rates, and changes to lipid levels, the immune system, and liver.”
What is PTFE?
Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) is the chemical name for Teflon. The molecular structure of Teflon is based on a chain of carbon atoms, the same as all polymers. Unlike some other fluoropolymers, in Teflon this chain is completely surrounded by fluorine atoms. The bond between carbon and fluorine is very strong, and the fluorine atoms shield the vulnerable carbon chain making it very slippery (non-stick). This is a highly saturated fluorocarbon polymer, which was discovered by Roy Plunkett, a 27-year-old research chemist working at the DuPont Research Laboratories in Deep-water, New Jersey in 1938.
PTFE is used as a non stick coating for pans and other cookware. Within two to five minutes on a stove, cookware coated with Teflon can exceed temperatures at which the Teflon coating breaks apart and emits toxic particles and gases. These fumes can cause flu-like symptoms in humans (a condition known as polymer fume fever) and can be fatal to birds.
From the Environmental Working Group:
“In new tests conducted by a university food safety professor, a generic non-stick frying pan preheated on a conventional, electric stovetop burner reached 736 degrees F in three minutes and 20 seconds, with temperatures still rising when the tests were terminated. A Teflon pan reached 721 degrees F in just five minutes under the same test conditions, as measured by a commercially available infrared thermometer. DuPont studies show that the Teflon gases toxic particulates at 446 degrees F. At 680 degrees F Teflon pans release at least six toxic gases, including two carcinogens, two global pollutants, and MFA, a chemical lethal to humans at low doses. At temperatures that DuPont scientists claim are reached on stovetop drip pans (1000 F), non-stick coatings break down to a chemical warfare agent known as PFIB, and a chemical analog of the WWII nerve gas phosgene.“