Food-Safe Paint Brushes for Children to Paint Cookies

Hello,

I am making some paint-your-own cookies for some preschoolers. It's the first time I have used this technique. I think I remember reading a while ago about some food grade paint brushes to include with the cookies. Each child will get his/her own paint brush and palette. However, other than the sets that come in all different sizes, I can't seem to find any. I read through the posts on here and don't see any mention of using brushes that are food-safe. Is it safe to just use new clean brushes if children will be eating the cookies after they paint them? TIA

Elizabeth

Original Post

Good question! I haven't seen any small paint brushes that are officially food-grade either, and I doubt too many companies would be willing to invest the thousands of dollars required for testing for certified "food-safe" status. This question also begs the question of how far we should take food safety - what's reasonable? For instance, I place my cookies on non-food-grade wood surfaces when I decorate sometimes. Is that bad? Who knows? We all take calculated risks every day . . . my guess is that natural bristle brushes that have been sanitized, and that don't have painted handles (which can chip) or seams (are easy to clean/don't harbor bacteria) are pretty darn safe. I'd further posit that the artificial food colorings that we're feeding kids are far worse for them than brushes making momentary contact with cookies. But that's just my feeling; you'd have to make your own personal risk assessment on that.

Julia M. Usher posted:

Good question! I haven't seen any small paint brushes that are officially food-grade either, and I doubt too many companies would be willing to invest the thousands of dollars required for testing for certified "food-safe" status. This question also begs the question of how far we should take food safety - what's reasonable? For instance, I place my cookies on non-food-grade wood surfaces when I decorate sometimes. Is that bad? Who knows? We all take calculated risks every day . . . my guess is that natural bristle brushes that have been sanitized, and that don't have painted handles (which can chip) or seams (are easy to clean/don't harbor bacteria) are pretty darn safe. I'd further posit that the artificial food colorings that we're feeding kids are far worse for them than brushes making momentary contact with cookies. But that's just my feeling; you'd have to make your own personal risk assessment on that.

Thanks so much!  Good point on the food coloring.  The pictures I see online just look like small inexpensive brushes so I'm guessing thats what most use.  Just wanted to make sure I wasn't missing some issues with chemicals or anything.  Thanks again.

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