According to a survey released on Saturday by Taioei City Councilors, seventy-five percent of local chains serving coffee are using lids that are potentially toxic. That’s 1 out of 16 convenience store chains and fast food restaurant chains.
Major brands, such as Starbucks, McDonald’s, Mos Burger, President Chain Store Corp, and Dante Coffee, are included among offenders according to the Democratic Progressive Party councilors Liang Wen-chieh and Wu Su-yao.
Wu states “Polystyrene lids can withstand heat between 75 and 90 degrees Celsius only. If the food is any hotter, the plastic starts to melt, possibly releasing carcinogens. The Department of Health has warned consumers to pop up the lid when drinking from (polystyrene) lids, but isn’t that just shifting the responsibility to consumers?”
The remaining four coffee providers, OK Mart, FamilyMart, Hi-Life, and 85 Degrees Celsius Cafe, use the safer and pricier polypropylene lids.
While the bureau’s Food and Drug Division Director, Chen Li-chi, states that during testing lids never reached hotter than 90 degrees Celsius, the bureau will continue to communicate with the coffee providers and encourage them to switch to the safer polypropylene lids.
Currently, both lid versions are legal. Starting July 21st, however, food providers will be obligated by law to mark and label their containers with the materials used, sustainable temperatures, and date of manufacture.