There is no doubt that coffee tastes better when you brew fresh grounds. However, if you are using a plastic coffee maker like the AeroPress, you might be concerned about the safety of the plastic.
After all, hot water interacting with plastic can cause potentially dangerous chemicals to diffuse into your coffee.
Is the AeroPress made of safe plastic?
What Kind of Plastic Is Classic AeroPress Made of in 2023?
The AeroPress is a unique coffee brewer invented in 2005. The device has always been made out of plastic, and the manufacturer does not plan on changing this in the foreseeable future.
In 2018, AeroPress started using polypropylene plastic, which is what it still uses in 2023 for the classic Aeropress.
This plastic is BPA-free, lightweight, durable, and heat-resistant up to 130°C, making it an ideal material for coffee makers. It is also recyclable, so after using your AeroPress, you can recycle it instead of throwing it away.
What About the Newer Aeropress Clear?
The newer Aeropress Clear launched in 2023 is made of Tritan™, a trademarked copolyester invented by a company called Eastman Chemical Company.
Tritan has been used in the bottling industry since 2007 and has been reported to be safe, since:
- It is a 100% BPA-free plastic, not manufactured with bisphenol A (BPA), bisphenol S (BPS), or any other bisphenol compounds.
- It is durable and shatter-resistant.
AeroPress Stopped Using BPA in 2009
I’ve heard horror stories of BPA-plastic AeroPresses, so I dug into it.
Before 2009, the AeroPress makers used polycarbonate with BPA in the plastic. BPA is a synthetic compound playing a significant role in plastic products. Unfortunately, experts link BPA to several health concerns, as it is a carcinogenic compound.
In 2009, AeroPress makers switched to BPA-free copolyester in all its products. This was a big move for the company, and consumers widely praised it.
And from the year 2014 to till today, you will find AeroPresses made of polypropylene. Polypropylene has no trace of bisphenol A either.
Is the AeroPress Plastic Safe to Brew With?
Some chemicals in the plastic industry are suspected to be endocrine-disrupting chemicals that can interfere with the way our hormones work.
But the Aeropress is as safe as can be:
- Since 2014, Aeropress Inc. has used polypropylene to manufacture its coffee maker.
- Polypropylene is considered to be safe by the EPA and FDA approved.
- It is a durable, food-grade plastic used for many food holders.
- The seal at the end of the plunger is made of medical-grade silicone that can last long with proper care.
As a result, you can rest assured that your coffee will taste refreshingly great without the risk of consuming harmful chemicals.
Would it be better if it was made out of glass? Yes, I think so. But the company has no plans of going that route.
A Look at Whether There Is Any Evidence to Suggest the AeroPress Plastic Is Unsafe
Some people have expressed concern that plastic may leach chemicals into the coffee.
However, I have not found evidence that AeroPress plastic is unsafe for human use.
Could the AeroPress Leach Plastic Into Coffee?
You can never rule out plastic leaching into your food, especially if the plastic is damaged, scratched, or used to store food. But with that said, post-2014 models of the Aeropress use plastics that are safe and non-toxic.
Some studies found no leaching, but others found some leaching through plastic containers.
But let’s go wild, and let’s say that you sometimes use a polycarbonate AeroPress from pre-2009. A study by the Jordan University of Science and Technology found that BPA can leach into coffee, even from plastic coffee cups.
The hot liquid only comes into contact with plastic for a short period, but nevertheless, I would not use a pre-2009 Aeropress to make coffee.
But I would definitely keep it in storage, it might be worth a lot of money one day to a collector.
Will Boiling Water Break Down the AeroPress Plastic?
The primary material used to make AeroPress is plastic; we all know that boiling water can transform plastics adversely.
But the answer is no, boiling water will not break down a Tritan or polypropylene plastic Aeropress.
So go ahead and use your brewing water as you normally would. Your AeroPress can handle it.
In conclusion, you can rest assured that AeroPress is a safe choice and still one of the easiest ways to make coffee.
If you are still unsure, you can buy an aluminum or stainless steel Moka pot, a stainless steel or glass French press, or make cold brew coffee without the liquids touching any plastic. The brewing process with these is different, though, so they are not a true replacement for the Aeropress.