It is common for the functionality of a food container to be overlooked in the pursuit of aesthetics that are intended to influence consumer purchasing behaviour. Because food, specifically spices, are perishable and extremely vulnerable to light, they require special packaging to maintain their freshness and potency. While some people prefer to store spices in metal containers, the reality is that form does not always match function. While light can be harmful to spices, most are kept in cabinets, and a transparent or translucent jar is a perfectly acceptable alternative for storing them. Leaving aside the importance of labelling, most people enjoy seeing the decorative aspects of spices and knowing that they are using nutmeg and not cayenne pepper in their holiday egg nog or hot chocolate.

When it comes to storing spices properly, light is not the only factor to consider. It is critical to keep all of your spices in an airtight container to keep them fresh for as long as possible. After eliminating metal from consideration, the only remaining options are Glass or plastic. Even though both materials are adequate, one is unquestionably superior to the other. The expensive spices and of high quality are always kept in glass containers. Plastic can be porous, allowing small amounts of air to enter and slowly deteriorate spices. While every spice has an expiry date, if it is properly stored and sealed, it can have a significantly longer shelf life than if it is not. Another advantage of using glass containers is the interaction they have with the cap. Unlike most caps, which are made of plastic, the glass rim of the jar allows for a more secure seal with both the lid and the liner when closed. One final point to consider is that plastic leaches when exposed to high or low temperatures. The freezing or heating of plastic containers can result in the introduction of tiny particles into the product. The faint taste of plastic can ruin any flavour, even a potent spice, because it is so subtle. While people often gravitate toward plastic because it is less breakable and easier to ship, Glass is the obvious choice for any food product. It is also the least expensive.

In summary, when storing spices in any environment, it is essential to consider light exposure and temperature control in an airtight environment. By its very nature, Glass creates a better seal, and storing spices in their original containers with a seal will increase the longevity of the spices and ensure that they have the best flavour possible for all of your cooking needs.