Melissa-makes-cakes Posted 18 Mar 2009 , 9:05pm
post #1 of

I have read a lot on here that says putting cakes on boards covered with contact paper is not food safe and I was wondering if you can put cakes directly on foam board- or if that is not food safe?

48 replies
Deb_ Posted 18 Mar 2009 , 11:26pm
post #2 of

Unless I can buy the board at my baker's wholesale place then no I would not place my cake directly on it. I know a lot of people use foamcore board for their cakes, the only way I would feel comfortable doing that is if the cake was on a "cake circle" then that was placed on the foamcore. That way the cake does not come in direct contact with the board or the contact paper you may cover the board with.

When you're in business selling cakes and baked goods as many of us are then it's our responsibility to use products that are food safe. I never understood why some people would take the risk of using things that are NOT food safe. Is it really worth the pennies that you may save?

When a product leaves my kitchen, I have piece of mind knowing that everything that went into it and that the cake is placed on and in, is food safe. I don't want the HD breathing down my back, but if they do they won't find any reason to shut me down.

Sorry for the lecture, but it's a pet peeve of mine when I have read some of the threads in the past about bakers using "unconventional" things on cakes. Our clients are putting their trust in our hands, so it is a big deal. icon_smile.gif

Cakepro Posted 19 Mar 2009 , 1:38am
post #3 of

I went and licked a piece of foamcore a few minutes ago. If you guys don't hear back from me tomorrow, DON'T USE IT ON YOUR CAKES!!!












icon_biggrin.gif I use foamcore all the time, but I put Press n' Seal on both sides, so the foamcore isn't in direct contact with the cake.

Deb_ Posted 19 Mar 2009 , 12:17pm
post #4 of

Just because you may lick it and not get sick doesn't mean it's food approved by your HD.

I'm happy to hear that you at least cover the board with something, some don't.

I just don't understand the "fascination" with this stuff icon_rolleyes.gif

We seem to always disagree on matters of "food safety" so your answer really doesn't surprise me at all.

To me it's pretty black and white. There are "food safety" approved items and there are items that are not made for food. Pretty simple decision as to what we should use, don't you think?

jammjenks Posted 19 Mar 2009 , 3:02pm
post #5 of

dkelly - I'm quite sure she was joking about that. I thought it was funny.

Anyway, I echo what has been said that you should cover foam board if you put a cake on it. I don't use it myself, but if I did I would cover it.

peg818 Posted 19 Mar 2009 , 7:52pm
post #6 of

I use foam core but whether or not its food safe i doubt it. I suggest covering it. But then again i wouldn't even use a cake circle with out covering it. So maybe i'm into overkill but if you have any doubt about a product you use you need to take the proper precautions.

Deb_ Posted 19 Mar 2009 , 8:01pm
post #7 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by jammjenks

dkelly - I'm quite sure she was joking about that. I thought it was funny.




I hope you're right, because I'm thinking that food safety is not anything to joke about. icon_smile.gif

Cakepro Posted 19 Mar 2009 , 8:47pm
post #8 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by dkelly


We seem to always disagree on matters of "food safety" so your answer really doesn't surprise me at all.




Who, me? I didn't realize we had ever discussed food-safe items vs. items-that-we-use-without-the-food-safe-designation before. On what topics did we disagree?

Yes, of course I was kidding about licking it. icon_smile.gif

lisa78332 Posted 19 Mar 2009 , 8:55pm
post #9 of

I was not aware that contact paper was unsafe. I haven't used it, but would like to know why it isn't safe. I've wanted to use fabric to cover my cake boards, but then what would I use over that?

Deb_ Posted 19 Mar 2009 , 9:03pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cakepro

Quote:
Originally Posted by dkelly


We seem to always disagree on matters of "food safety" so your answer really doesn't surprise me at all.



Who, me? I didn't realize we had ever discussed food-safe items vs. items-that-we-use-without-the-food-safe-designation before. On what topics did we disagree?

Yes, of course I was kidding about licking it. icon_smile.gif




Forgive me if I'm mistaken you for another member, which is entirely possible, but I think we have disagreed on the dreaded "Wrapping a warm cake and popping it in the freezer before it cools, bacteria growing, etc" issue. No?

I'm sorry if it wasn't you, so many members have changed their screen names and avators lately that I'm having a hard time keeping track of everyone.

Lisa, there was a thread a while back with some info about contact paper not being "food safe" because of the type of plastic that it's made from. A member here actually had an e-mail from the makers of the paper stating that it is not intended to come in direct contact with food. I'll try to find the thread for you, I think I commented on it, so I probably have it in my "watched topics" list.

Deb_ Posted 19 Mar 2009 , 9:17pm

Try this link to read about contact paper, it's on page 2 and 3 of this thread, the post by blakescakes


http://www.cakecentral.com/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=619684&postdays=0&postorder=asc&highlight=contact&&start=30

Cakepro Posted 19 Mar 2009 , 11:20pm

I have not changed my username (ever) or avatar since last fall.

Perhaps we did disagree on that subject, I dunno. I am of the opinion that the cake is all but sterile when it comes out of the oven and no microbial growth is going to occur if someone immediately wraps the cake in plastic wrap or foil because no bacteria are present when the cakes are wrapped. However, I do not advocate putting hot items in freezers or refrigerators. I only put room-temperature items into fridges and freezers...per the manufacturers' specific instructions.

I was reading a culinary textbook just a few days ago on the issue of microbial growth and baked goods, and the author said that no bacteria are present on cakes when they come out of the oven. I meant to bookmark that to cite as a source if I ever discussed this subject again but didn't do it. *Shrug*

gleep Posted 19 Mar 2009 , 11:53pm

My inspector says that it's fine to use the foam board but it should be cleaned first. I use a bleach/water solution to wipe it down and he is satisfied with that. He says he worries more about people using wax covered cake circles that have been sitting in a dusty box/store for who knows how long. People put their cakes directly on those and I bet very few of them clean them first.

Ruth0209 Posted 20 Mar 2009 , 12:12am

Dkelly, you'll be very pleased to know that I was listening carefully to the contact paper discussion, and this week when I covered a board with wrapping paper and then contact paper, I heard your voice in my head saying, "Put a cake board under that!" and I did.

Seriously, I'm with you. I don't EVER want any customer to feel that I've put their cake on something that worries them, no matter how cute it might look (or how functional it might be). Everyone goes home happy that way!

I appreciate the ongoing education I receive here about this craft.

playingwithsugar Posted 20 Mar 2009 , 12:18am

Are you all talking about actual styrofoam boards, or what is commonly called FoamCore?

FoamCore (the stuff with the foam in the middle and cardboard on the outside) is not greaseproof, and the paper will suck all the moisture out of your cake. Then the glue holding the paper will leach into your cake, and when you go to cut it, you will get those little pieces of paper residue on your slice and your knife.

Always use food-safe plastic or foil between your cake and your FoamCore.

Theresa icon_smile.gif

Deb_ Posted 20 Mar 2009 , 1:59am
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth0209

Dkelly, you'll be very pleased to know that I was listening carefully to the contact paper discussion, and this week when I covered a board with wrapping paper and then contact paper, I heard your voice in my head saying, "Put a cake board under that!" and I did.

Seriously, I'm with you. I don't EVER want any customer to feel that I've put their cake on something that worries them, no matter how cute it might look (or how functional it might be). Everyone goes home happy that way!

I appreciate the ongoing education I receive here about this craft.




Ruth................ thumbs_up.gificon_biggrin.gif

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
cakepro.......nope it wasn't you then so please accept my apology. The person I'm thinking about takes them from the oven, immediately wraps them and then puts the HOT cake in the freezer. icon_eek.gif

klat7292 Posted 20 Mar 2009 , 2:10am
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cakepro

icon_biggrin.gif I use foamcore all the time, but I put Press n' Seal on both sides, so the foamcore isn't in direct contact with the cake.




I LOVE that stuff (Press n' Seal)!! It works wonders for freezing cakes as well!! thumbs_up.gif

icon_biggrin.gif

MacsMom Posted 20 Mar 2009 , 2:25am

I use foam core board all the time without issue of grease-sucking. It's easy to slice on, too.

Know why I use it? Because I wanted to make cakes like Colette Peters so I bought her "Cakes to Dream On" book and she instructs to use it! She says you'll find it the craft aisle, too, so I know it isn't a special type.

Her base boards are covered completely in fondant, but not the circles for each successive tier.

I have always used it and watching Duff use it just boosts my confidence in it.

Deb_ Posted 20 Mar 2009 , 12:19pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by gleep

My inspector says that it's fine to use the foam board but it should be cleaned first. I use a bleach/water solution to wipe it down and he is satisfied with that.





tapedshut.gificon_eek.gificon_eek.giftapedshut.gif Bleach and water? Now that's a whole other food safety discussion. Please rethink that, you do not want bleach coming in contact with cake. I'd like to meet that inspector. icon_rolleyes.gif

Cakepro Posted 20 Mar 2009 , 1:05pm

Well, sanitizing solutions are bleach and water. You can even wash your fruits and vegetables in a bleach/water solution.

MissRobin Posted 20 Mar 2009 , 1:55pm

Never had a problem with foam core sucking grease and moisture out of cake, actually it is quite sturdy and stable everytime I cut into a cake that has been sitting on it!! I don't cover my foamcore except for the base board and I don't intend on doing it. I would much rather use foamcore than those cheap grease sucking cake circles that are supposed to be food safe. What are the cheap cake circles made out of that is food safe vs. foam core?

SHogg Posted 20 Mar 2009 , 2:19pm

I always use foam core for my cake boards and i always cover it with either fondant or paper, but the cake never sits directly on any of the coverings since I use thin cake rounds for directly under the cake.

__Jamie__ Posted 20 Mar 2009 , 2:36pm

I'm going to start a poll wherein "Is dog poo safe to eat? It is organic and it does come from nature"....and if enough people agree with me, is it now legally foodsafe? It either is or it isn't, and a POLL is not the place to make up your mind on whether or not something is safe.

That said....sheesh, yes cover the foamcore with something and you are good to go!

Deb_ Posted 20 Mar 2009 , 8:23pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by __Jamie__

I'm going to start a poll wherein "Is dog poo safe to eat? It is organic and it does come from nature"....and if enough people agree with me, is it now legally foodsafe? It either is or it isn't, and a POLL is not the place to make up your mind on whether or not something is safe.

That said....sheesh, yes cover the foamcore with something and you are good to go!




judge.gifthumbs_up.gificon_biggrin.gif Jamie.......always the voice of reason.....Thanks!!

__Jamie__ Posted 20 Mar 2009 , 9:00pm

icon_biggrin.gif LOL!

BlakesCakes Posted 21 Mar 2009 , 9:12pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by playingwithsugar

Are you all talking about actual styrofoam boards, or what is commonly called FoamCore?

FoamCore (the stuff with the foam in the middle and cardboard on the outside) is not greaseproof, and the paper will suck all the moisture out of your cake. Then the glue holding the paper will leach into your cake, and when you go to cut it, you will get those little pieces of paper residue on your slice and your knife.

Always use food-safe plastic or foil between your cake and your FoamCore.

Theresa icon_smile.gif




Sorry, but this is malarkey because it's not even close to what actually happens when I use foamcore under my cakes!

I often cut the cakes I make and I NEVER GET ANY PAPER COMING UP WITH THE CAKE.

I did an experiment and put a huge board in the dishwasher for a full cycle and the THE PAPER HELD TIGHT TO THE BOARD, FOR GODS SAKE! After removing it from the dishwasher, I had to grip it by the edge and forcibly tear it away from the foam core.

In my opinion, it's far worse to have bits of plastic (food safe, or not), wax paper, or foil to come up with the cake slice--and if you cut with a serrated knife, THEY WILL COME UP WITH EVERY SLICE. However, I find it very difficult to get the paper on the foamcore to tear up.

I sanitize my boards with vanilla extract or Everclear.

Rae

Cakepro Posted 21 Mar 2009 , 9:42pm

So, Rae, do you put cake directly on foamcore that you buy at craft stores? If so, I will start doing so as well because I know that you are exceptionally vigilant about food safety and trust your judgment.

I saw in ACD magazine yesterday that there is a cake supplier of foamcore that has earned the food safe label (LOL, this may be old news but I had never paid attention until this thread).

BlakesCakes Posted 21 Mar 2009 , 11:20pm

Hi, Sherri.
Yes, I do put my cakes directly on my foamcore. I learned it from Colette several years ago and I respect her knowledge & practices very much.

That aside, if you have info on "food safe" foam core, please post any info, because I'd be delighted to investigate it. If it isn't a plastic type tuff board, then someone has most likely spent a fortune to get a type of foamcore certified as food safe. It may be great, or it may be a way to charge a fortune for what we're already buying that hasn't been "certified".......

My DH is an MD/epidemiologist and we've discussed this at length (after having researched foamcore, it's components, etc.) and he feels that my practices are safe & reasonable.

Rae

kakeladi Posted 21 Mar 2009 , 11:50pm

From what little knowledge I have about 'food safe' items a lot has to do with where it is made. I understand to get a food safe lable you have to have inspectors check out all ingredients used and the process of how it is made (and obviously the equipment).
I investigated this aspect when I was going to invest in a frosting sheet printer and ink.

Cakepro Posted 22 Mar 2009 , 9:34pm

Rae, honestly, I must have been dreaming. I vividly remember thumbing through the ACD issue that came the other day and seeing either a full-page or half-page add for food-safe foamcore. The advertiser even said they cut custom sizes as well. I just went through that issue of ACD four times and nothing like that is in there.

I recently started a new nerve-blocking medication for my sciatica which causes me to have extremely vivid and very long dreams. I seriously must have been dreaming, as I often peruse Cake Central while I'm in bed. I just can't think of any other cake mags that I have looked at in the last week since this topic came up.

Sorry!!! :embarrassed:

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