A minister of health, an expert on traditional medicine from Darmais Hospital in Jakarta, Aldrin Nelwan stated, “Plastic for food is different from plastic used for other materials, there are codes listed from P01 to 07 in plastic sizes. Plastic for food also has limits on its use. And according to medical health recommendations, the container used for herbal medicine should use a glass bottle. Because the compounds in plastics can react at temperatures too hot, it is feared that they will affect the medicinal properties. For that, Dr. Aldrin highly recommends traders, especially food traders, to use other materials besides plastic, “he said.
According to the doctor, the reaction that occurs between the plastic bottle and the hot herbal liquid can trigger cancer-triggering substances. Apart from the use of plastic bottles, another question arose from herbal medicine traders, should they replace the use of glass cups with plastic cups? Based on a survey conducted by the Jakarta health agency, herbal medicine traders admit that buyers are often uncomfortable seeing the glasses used are only soaked and washed with a bucket of water. The discussion took place at the accompanying event for the Handling Herbal Medicine Business Actors (UJG) and the Herbal Medicine Business (UJR). The event was held on November 7, 2013 in the Avara room, Epicentrum Walk in South Jakarta.
Currently, many herbal medicine sellers switch to using small cups, he admits that the use of plastic cups is more practical and disposable afterwards. In addition, using plastic cups is considered cheaper and easier than using glass, which is heavier than plastic. Responding to this, then what is the opinion of the doctor? “If the benefits are better, that’s okay. In my opinion, because it is only used once and for a short time, the reaction between plastic and herbal ingredients will not have a big effect. For that, there is no problem, so just use it, if it is only used once and for a short time, ”explained the doctor.
Besides discussing the effect of using this type of bottle on herbal medicine sellers, M.Kes., Head of Sub-Directorate for Production and Distribution of Traditional Medicines and Medicines, Dra Nadira Rahim who accompanied Dr. At that time, Aldrin suggested several other things that need to be considered by the sellers, namely, the quality of herbal medicine from the start which must always be considered when concocting herbal medicine. In addition, the use of assistive devices such as containers or bowls that are used must always be clean and sterile so that the herbs are not exposed to germs and bacteria that can enter the body of the drinker which can cause health problems. So the use of bottles used for jamu containers should use glass bottles so there is no chemical reaction caused by substances in the plastic which can affect the properties of these herbs. However, for small cups, the use of plastic cups is allowed as long as they are only used once and for a short time.