An Ohio woman has just successfully sued DuPont, the manufacturer of Teflon non-stick coatings, for $1.6M.
Back when DuPont were using a chemical called PFOA (or C8) to manufacture Teflon, they dumped toxic sludge containing the chemical into a huge landfill site they owned. The chemical leached into the surrounding environment and contaminated the Ohio woman's drinking water supply. Hers and those of six other surrounding districts.
One study into DuPont's practices estimated that by 2003, DuPont had dispersed almost 2.5 million pounds of PFOA from its Washington Works plant into the mid-Ohio River Valley area.
It goes further.
For more than 50 years, DuPont concealed the cancer-causing properties of PFOA.
So anyway, I prefer not to place my trust in DuPont and Teflon. This of course means that Teflon-coated cookware is out.
Which begs the question, which cookware should be allowed in?
The good news is that nowadays there are many toxin-free options. Here's five:
Enamel/CeramicQuality brands like Le Creuset and Emile Henry are the way to go. Avoid the cheaper alternatives as there's no guarantee the enamel coating used on these is lead-free.
ClayFired terracotta clay makes for exceptional and completely toxin-free cookware. Brands like La Chamba, Bram and The Spanish Table are all excellent. Bonus is, they are often made by traditional artisans so you're not only helping to keep an ancient tradition alive but traditional communities in employment.
GlassNo toxins, no leaching, tempered glass is a terrific option for baking and roasting. I like to hunt for glass cookware in op-shops, otherwise Pyrex is great. Or the above lovely designer pot.
Green/Eco non-stickThere are quite a few brands available, including GreenPan and Neoflam. Their non-stick coatings are made with natural minerals and are toxin-free.
Do you have a favourite cookware type? Share the love below...