Safe, Reusable Plastic Dinnerware is a Problem Worth Solving

Reusable plastic dinnerware (plates, bowls, etc.) have been a mainstay on tables around the world for over 50 years.  Each year, well over one billion pieces of are sold worldwide.  Currently, virtually all of that dinnerware is molded from melamine resin (also known as urea formaldehyde), a plastic resin manufactured primarily in Asia.  Melamine has two major issues that make it inhospitable in the modern kitchen:  

  • Melamine cannot be safely used in a microwave oven because melamine absorbs microwave energy. If placed in a microwave, melamine will become extremely hot, will emit noxious fumes, and can eventually ignite.
  • Whenever melamine dinnerware is heated above 160 degrees Fahrenheit (60 degrees C), it will leach formaldehyde, a known human carcinogen, into the food it comes in contact with.  This danger continues for 2-4 years after the product is manufactured.

Our Solution

In 1987, a plastic resin was developed by a Chicago-based company that would allow the airlines to microwave meals served in the coach cabin. (Remember those days?). It was the first thermoset plastic resin that was safe for food contact and did not absorb microwave energy - so only the food was heated - not the serving plate. After the airlines consolidated and 'hot meals in coach' became a fond memory, this material was put on the shelf.  In 2013, through a series of coincidences, we were able to devise a commercially-viable process for applying digitally-printed images on the material we now call ThermoSāf ®.  In 2014, DecoPlate® was formed to manufacture and distribute this unique and useful product and make it commercially available. ThermoSāf ® has a five significant advantages over melamine:

  • ThermoSāf ® does not absorb microwave energy, so it can be used safely in any residential or commercial microwave oven
  • ThermoSāf ® can be used in a conventional oven for food warming at temperatures up to 300 degrees Fahrenheit
  • ThermoSāf ® is 100% BPA and formaldehyde free - as well as FDA-compliant for daily food contact
  • The DecoPlate process will allow the precise and repeatable reproduction of any graphic image or design on ThermoSāf ® products
  • ThermoSāf ® is 100% U.S.A. manufactured using 100% U.S. materials and labor

 The Case Against Melamine in Dinnerware

At DecoPlate, we're biased. We believe that our ThermoSāf® resin is the safest material in the world for reusable plastic dinnerware. We also believe that the plastic used as the market standard for over 50 years - melamine - has numerous issues related to safety - particularly child safety.

But don't take our word for it...