Production, Health & Safety

 

Production Process

Dart uses safe and efficient processes to make our products:

 

  • In thermoforming, an extruded sheet of plastic is laid over a mold, and heat and suction are used to mold the plastic around the outside of the mold. Once shaped, the sheets are cooled and trimmed to create the finished product.

 

  • In extrusion, melted plastic is forced through a mold before cooling.

 

  • Injection molding is similar to extrusion, but rather than forcing melted plastic through a mold, the plastic is forced into a mold cavity. The product is then cooled, ejected from the mold, and trimmed.

 

  • In steam-chest molding, polystyrene beads are blown into a mold, further expanded with steam, and fused into puffed beads. The mold releases the final product, and no trimming or cutting is needed.

 

  • For paperboard coating, polylactic acid is applied to paper cups and containers as a liner that helps packaging hold food and drinks without leaking. Please visit the Coated Paper page for more information.

Health and Safety

 

Dart values the health and safety of customers, employees, and consumers. We take pride in safely and efficiently providing high-quality food and beverage packaging solutions. The following materials have been used to safely make Dart products for years, and have been deemed safe for food and beverage use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. These materials do not contain Bisphenol A (BPA), dioxins, or plasticizers.

  • Polyethylene terephthalate (PET)
  • Polypropylene (PP)
  • Rigid and foam polystyrene (PS)
  • Polylactic acid (PLA)
  • All mentioned coatings and paperboard materials
  • Bagasse (sugarcane)

 

Inks and Latex

 

Dart uses UV inks on our products because they adhere to surfaces smoothly and evenly, and also contain no volatile organic compounds or heavy metals. Additionally, Dart does not make any products containing latex and latex gloves are not used in any Dart manufacturing plants.

 

Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs)

 

CFCs are known to harm Earth’s atmosphere and ozone layer and were banned from use in the U.S. in 1996. Dart has never used CFCs to make our products. Pentane, the blowing agent used to create Dart’s PS foam products, has no known effect on the ozone layer.

 

Styrene

 

Styrene is often confused with polystyrene, but they are fundamentally different. Styrene is a liquid, and polystyrene is solid plastic made from polymerized styrene. A naturally occurring substance, styrene is in many foods and drinks, including wheat, beef, strawberries, peanuts, and coffee beans. Also found in cinnamon, styrene has a chemical structure similar to cinnamic aldehyde, the chemical component that gives cinnamon its flavor.

In production, styrene is derived from petroleum and natural gas. The clear, colourless liquid helps create thousands of remarkably strong, flexible, and light-weight products for home, school, work, and play. It’s used in everything from food containers and packaging materials to cars, boats, video games, and computers. Styrene is even found in medical, health, and safety equipment.

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