SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — Due to growing scientific evidence of the toxic effects of vinyl gloves to the environment, to food safety and to glove user health, Eagle Protect has discontinued selling vinyl (PVC) gloves.
The heavy chlorine content in PVC causes dioxins to be released into the surrounding atmosphere during manufacturing, burning or landfilling of PVC. Exposure to dioxins can reportedly cause reproductive, developmental, and other health problems, and at least one dioxin is classified as a carcinogen.
Vinyl gloves can contain phthalates which have been shown to leach from the gloves into the human body, and can easily leach and evaporate into food, particularly fatty food. Phthalates DiNP and DEHP have been found to adversely impact human health and are on the Prop 65 list of chemicals known to the state of California to cause cancer.
Studies have proven vinyl gloves have an increased permeability to bacteria and virus, and in some cases begin leaking as soon as they are donned. New research also shows vinyl gloves are an ineffective barrier in food handling and have three times the cross-contamination potential of quality nitrile gloves.
Eagle Protect is not alone in its decision. In 2001 Japan banned PVC gloves for food handling due to the well documented adverse effects on health. Kaiser Permanente in the US also moved from vinyl gloves to nitrile due to the same concerns. So why are vinyl still the most commonly used disposable gloves in food handling in the US?
While vinyl gloves are cheap per glove, the economics driving the selection of disposable food safety gloves expand far beyond per unit cost, though many glove supply companies and procurement professionals don't see it as such. They fail to factor in food safety aspects, focusing primarily on finding the most inexpensive glove option for their organization.
This low-cost methodology does not factor in the cost of business risk of compromised food safety, together with the environmental and human health implications of vinyl gloves.
Source: Eagle Protect