I store cornmeal, walnuts and loose change in my Talenti containers. What’s in yours?
Maybe mosaic glass pieces, dentures, bangle bracelets or art supplies, which are just a few examples of the “pint-cycling” celebrated on a Talenti Facebook page.
They had been filled with Talenti gelato, of course — a small brand that became such a hit it was acquired by mega-corporation Unilever a few years back. And the packaging itself might be part of the reason.
Josh Hochshuler, the man who founded the business in the early 2000s, figured his product would stand out in pint-filled retail freezers because it was housed in clear plastic instead of cardboard. He was right. Consumers say they like seeing what’s inside.
He developed the Talenti jar to replicate the look of a gelato shop display case, using the same widely accepted recyclable material polyethylene terephthalate (PET or PETE, #1 recycling symbol, used for bottled water) for the jar and polyethylene (#2, same as plastic milk jugs) for the screw-top lid. Current production: about 250,000 Talenti pints per day.
There might be more repurposing than recycling going on, which is a good thing considering that untreated PET is not biodegradable. Unilever reports the jars are popular for packing an office lunch of chopped vegetables, salad or fruit, and has seen them featured as part of wedding decor. Boaters and those who work on the sea appreciate the pints because they are air- and watertight, stackable, and won’t rust like jars with metal lids.
And although you may have been popping your inverted empties in the top rack of the dishwasher, it’s not recommended. Neither is microwave use. Exposing them to high heat could cause the jars to become misshapen or no longer compatible with those snug-fitting lids, Unilever says. So wash them by hand before you refill to your heart’s content.