When I read that chlorinated paraffins were released in some brands of immersion blenders, I began the search for a safer option. While I’m happy with my new one, I’m determined to rely on it less, while exploring ways to prepare food the old-fashioned way!
Why I Replaced My Immersion Blender
The Difference Between a Hand Blender and a Hand Mixer
The terms immersion blender and hand blender are used interchangeably. Other terms include wand blender or stick blender. Hand mixers, on the other hand, have two beaters that help prepare dough for baking. Sometimes a hand mixer can be used in the same way as a blender.
A motor is used to control the rotary blade of the immersion blender and is much closer to the blending components as opposed to the hand mixer.
What are chlorinated paraffins?
CPs are classified as toxic to aquatic organisms and carcinogenic to rats and mice. Short-chain chlorinated paraffins (SCCPs) are categorized in group 2B as possibly carcinogenic to humans from the International Agency for Research on Cancer. I definitely don’t want to blend CPs with my food.
I first became aware of the possible leakage of chlorinated paraffins when I read a University of Stockholm study citing eight hand blenders shown to release CPs. (See the previous post Chlorinated Parrafins in Hand Blenders.)
While my brand, Cuisinart, was not listed, I was determined to find one of the safe brands noted in the study. This proved to be difficult since the study was conducted in Europe. These are the four safe brands according to the study:
- OBH Nordica, Chilli
- Philips, ProMix
- OBH Nordica, Indigo
I chose the Nordica brand and purchased a step-down unit since I was going from 220V to 110V. I purchased one of the higher-priced Nordica models from Royal Design, a Swedish-based home goods online merchant.
I’ve been happy with my purchase, especially since the hood looks to be a higher grade than my Cuisinart.
However, a representative at Nordica acknowledged that some plastic is used in the machinery and all of their immersion blenders are made in China.
What about Philips and Bosch?
I haven’t researched the other “safe” brands. Both are readily available on eBay and neither appears to need a transformer.
Another potential safe hand blender might be the Bamix Immersion Hand Blender found here on Amazon. The product is manufactured in Switzerland as opposed to China and is 140-watt. The blades are made of stainless steel. The cutter guard is made of aluminum, however, according to a company representative. This could be cause for concern.
Ideally, I would do without an immersion blender. Machinery this close to food is not to be taken lightly, and unless I’m manufacturing it myself, I can’t know exactly what is used to make the product and where the materials are sourced.
I’m pleased with my Nordica purchase given that we rely on it only sporadically. More importantly, I’m glad to be thinking differently when it comes to food preparation. I no longer assume all is well when it comes to our gizmos and gadgets. I continue to explore non-electric methods of food preparation, recently investing in an old-fashioned egg beater and an outdoor pizza oven!