So many things are labeled “green” are actually quite far from being truly eco-friendly. The pots and pans labeled ‘green cookware’ are no different. This disguise is so great that many of the pots and pans are painted green and therefore are even labeled “green” or eco-friendly (type eco-friendly pots in a search engine, the results include green colored pots) while the fact is the green paint itself has toxic ingredients unhealthy for the food and the environment in many ways.
What determines the eco-value of a product is, in fact, what is inside it or what it is made up of. To summarize, there are mainly 3-4 aspects that determine a product’s planet-friendly worthiness:
What it’s made of:
The raw material plays an important role in making an eco-friendly product. If the raw material is toxic, the product can never be called green or eco-friendly. In case of cookware, the metals conventionally used to make cookware release many toxic by-products during mining, extraction, processing, and finishing. Acquiring the raw material calls for massive deforestation to create mines and quarries (for ingredients in ceramic cookware) affecting the wildlife and the lives of people living nearby. Can this be eco-friendly? No way!
How is it made?
Even if you choose an eco-friendly raw material, the way of manufacturing may impact the environment if chemicals are used at any stage and if toxic liquid or gaseous wastes are released into the environment. It is important that the manufacturing process neither affects the environment nor the health of people working in it.
How does it work?
Another determining factor is how it cooks? Most non-stick cookware release toxic fumes when heated poisoning the environment. Most metal cookware requires high heat to accomplish anything while cooking. This is because metals heat and cool at the same time and a higher amount of heat is needed to cook the same food as compared to a truly eco-friendly pot (keep reading to find out which one is).
Another aspect that’s also important is what happens at the end of their life cycle: truly green cookware should be fully biodegradable. Treatment of non-biodegradable waste is a challenge the whole world is struggling with and if a product is non-biodegradable it is certainly not eco-friendly.
The only pot that is green in all 4 aspects is cookware made from pure clay:
The raw material is all-natural and non-toxic. It doesn’t affect the environment while it is harvested or processed. In fact, people working with pure clay have reported it has therapeutic effects on their health. So the raw material is truly eco-friendly – CHECK!
Pure clay pots are made without using any chemicals. They are made in an old-fashioned way on a potter’s wheel with skillful hands and that sure isn’t harmful to the environment. This time-honored method of making pots from pure clay makes its manufacturing process absolutely green – CHECK!
When the pots made from this healthy material cook food, they neither leach toxins nor destroy nutrients. On the contrary, they cook food with gentle, far-infrared heat that keeps the nutritional value of food intact. Also, at the end of their useful lifecycle, they can be disposed off anywhere – they will go back to the same earth from where they came from causing no harm to the environment, making them fully biodegradable and thus, eco-friendly – CHECK!