Category Archives: Metal Containers

Food Safety – Are Metal Containers Safe?

You love the looks of a metal container but face one big question…Can I put food in it?  Are metal tins food safe?  This happens to be a popular question at Freund so we put our experts to work and came up with a number of answers to help you out.  Whether you are looking to package homemade goodies as a gift, or want your package on retail shelves it is paramount that your metal container meet food safety requirements.

Types of Metal Containers

Metal Containers featured on Freund Container & Supply  are safe for use with food often indicated as “FDA Approved”, however with other suppliers this may not be the case.  Nearly but not all metal tins are food safe within the Freund offering and if you are unsure it is important to confirm.  You may be asking, What makes a metal container FDA Approved?  First place to look is the liner.  There are three types of liners aligned with food safety standards.

  • C-Enamel liner works with low acidic foods.  Think “C is for Corn”.  This liner is for use with low acidity foods that will be stored for a prolonged period.  
  • White Enamel liner works with higher acidic foods “Think Red”, like beets, berries, tomatoes, etc.
  •  Lacquer liner is FDA approved and good for use with more acidic foods.

Warning! Though most tins contain one of the liners from above many tins are available unlined as well.  Visually lined and unlined tins look identical making confirming their food rating extremely important.  Do not ever assume a product is food safe!

Metal Containers and Liquids

FDA Approved tins can also be used with liquid food products, however though a metal container may be food safe many are not leak-proof.  Be sure to check with your representative if you require a leak-proof product.

Wash Metal Containers Before Use!

Simply having a FDA Approval does not guarantee product arriving ready to be filled.  In fact it is best practice to always wash all containers prior to filling with any type of food product.  Containers during transport can become contaminated with dust and debris.  Cleaning your product before use will keep your customers safe and satisfied.

Do you have more questions about food safety?  Let us know and we’ll do our best to address them in future posts.

Metal Container Anatomy: Inside & Out

As the industry’s Metal Container leader since 1938 Freund Container has your answers for better packaging solutions.

WHY CHOOSE METAL? Metal is one of the most abundant raw materials, offering superior content protection and provides a very low environmental footprint.

Metal Liner Types:
C-Enamel liners work great for low acidic foods. For prolonged storing of foods with low acidity, however a discoloration of the metal surface can occur.
White Enamel liners are ideal for higher acidic foods, such as beets, berries, tomatoes, etc.
Epoxy liners are for most water and latex based solvents and increase chemical stability.
Laquer liners are FDA approved and work well for acidic food and aggressive solutions.

Frequently Asked Questions:
Heated Metal? Tinplate heat up to 450°F (230°C). Stainless Steel and Carbon can be heated to 2600°F.
Rusting Metal? Much of our metal is treated with a rust inhibitor, but not rust preventer. Rust is based on moisture and oxygen and however much exposure a container gets to either one of these post manufacturing is what will determine if any, how much rust you will incur. Testing is recommended with your product.


anatomy of a can 










Bead: concave (interior bead dot) or convex (exterior bead dot) area usually 1/8″ wide spanning the circumference of the tin to provide additional strength and stability to the tin bodyBody: a can without a cover (lid); the base of a containerCover: a can’s lid or closureCurl: area of tin turned in on itself to provide a safe, finished curved edge dotDome: a type of cover characterized by a flat horizontal surface (top) that tapers smoothly onto the skirt (vertical surface) dot

Drawn: see seamless

End: the area of a tin also known as the bottom. Coffee-style hermetic tins generally have two ends. Ends can be attached by seaming them on or crimping dot

Full friction: a plug-style metal cap fits snugly to the interior of the can dot

Hem: similar to a curl, an area of tin turned in on itself to provide a safe, finished flattened edge

Interior Friction: Cover/closure option in which a pliable ring fits to the interior of a tin allowing for a straight-sided slender profile can

Lock-seam: side walls meet and attach by hooking onto one another to form a tin body dot

Multiple friction: a plug closure fits into a “well” of a seamed-on ring. The plug is pressed into the ring and the two surfaces (the outside and inside edge) come into contact with the ring, creating multiple sealing surfaces on the plug/ring combination dot

Seamless: a tin that is constructed from a single piece of tin drawn to form the body of the can

Single friction: a plug-style metal cap fits snugly into a seamed on ring. The outside edge of the plug presses against the interior edge of the ring, creating one sealing surface dot

Slip cover: cover/closure style in which the cover’s skirt (vertical surface) slips over and to the outside of the can body dot dot

Stepped cover: type of slip cover in which a “step” is created between the horizontal surface and vertical surface of the cover so that stacking tins is possible with less likelihood of toppling over dot

Welded Seam: seam type in which side walls attach to one another through the use of heat to form a tin body dot

White Coat: entire surface of the metal is coated with white before applying other printing ink colors