Tableware is an item that we use every day. For this reason, it is important that crockery in general, and porcelain in particular, not only looks good but is also durable and robust. Of course, there is also the porcelain that is only taken out of the cupboard on special occasions. Here, it is important to recognize the good quality of porcelain tableware right away.
Check subtle differences between ceramic and porcelain
Not every crockery that looks like porcelain at first glance is actually porcelain. Various types of ceramics are very often confused with this noble material. In the case of ceramics, the main component for production is alumina. Porcelain is a subspecies of ceramics. However, the main component here is not the clay, but the so-called kaolin. This material is also known as china clay.
The top-quality crockery usually consists of at least 50% china clay. This material composition means that the porcelain is firstly harder and more durable than other ceramics, and secondly, they are more translucent.
Recognize counterfeits at a glance
Owing to there are now numerous companies that sell very expensive porcelain, there are also many fakes circulating on the market. In order to unmask this, consumers have to develop an eye for high-quality tableware brands. Both the logos and the names of well-known manufacturers are printed on the counterfeit tableware. But by learning the correct spelling of the brand name and the appearance of the logo in advance, buyers can often identify counterfeit products quickly.
In addition, interested parties should ensure that the name of the manufacturer is burned in and not just superficially printed. If the manufacturer’s name or the logo itself can be clearly felt with a finger or can even be scratched with a fingernail, it is usually a fake.
Buy high-quality porcelain safely on the Internet
If you want to be on the safe side, you should only buy high-quality crockery from reputable shops. For example, products from the well-known porcelain manufacturer BECASA HOUSEWARE can be purchased online. By purchasing from an official online shop, buyers can be sure that they are originals. The elegant patterns and modern shape design are typical for the products of this manufacturer. Among other things, there are cups, plates, and bowls in different designs as a set or individually.
In order not to come across a counterfeit in the first place, consumers should avoid buying high-quality porcelain from private buyers on the Internet. Here the risk is high that knowingly or unknowingly counterfeits are brought into circulation. If you would like to buy old crockery that may even have collector’s value, you can look around at flea markets.
The porcelain available in different qualities
It does not automatically mean that it is a high-quality product just due to tableware is made of porcelain. Many manufacturers have started to produce different quality levels. These are given a Roman numeral accordingly. As a rule, we are talking about the first, second, third, fourth, and fifth choices. Here, however, there are only approximate guidelines as to when which choice applies to a harness and when not.
The decisive factor is primarily how many proportions of faulty crockery were added to the first-choice product. Many manufacturers provide specific information on request or publish explanations of the internal gradations on their websites.
Of course, first-choice porcelain is significantly more expensive than a supposedly “worse” choice. But in many cases, it does not have to be the first choice to be happy with high-quality crockery in everyday life. However, when it comes to particularly expensive porcelain that increases in collector value with age, the class can definitely have an impact on the resale value.
Legal standards provide more clarity
Since 1999, there have even been legal standards on the subject of porcelain and quality. Fixed standards have been set here to ensure suitability for use in connection with food. Such as California Prop. 65. To date, however, it has not been possible to agree on fixed standards for all manufacturers for the express designation of quality. If consumers want to be absolutely sure here, the manufacturer must be explicitly asked about the criteria for sorting into the various quality levels.
If you want to save money and still don’t want to do without the quality of well-branded porcelain, you can use the so-called B grade-Ware. This is tableware that has optical defects that can be seen with the naked eye. Neither the function nor the durability is affected. If the serviceability of the crockery is retained, there is no reason not to use it in everyday life.
A list of common international testing standards for the quality of ceramic tableware
- “Porcelain for daily use” – GB/T 3532-2022
- “Underglaze/In-glaze daily-use porcelain” – GB/T 10811-2022
- GB/T 3298-2022 “Determination of thermal shock resistance of daily-use ceramics”
- Lead contamination of imported and domestic ceramics by FDA/ORA CPG 7117.07-1995
- Cadmium contamination of imported and domestic ceramics by FDA/ORA CPG 7117.06-1995
- California Prop. 65(California Prop. 65-2002)
- Israel SI 1003-1999 metal dissolution and marking of ceramic ware
- International Standard ISO6486/2[1999(E)] permissible limits of lead and cadmium release from ceramic products in contact with food
- European Union Directive 84/500/EEC permissible limits of lead and cadmium release from ceramic products in contact with food.
- German DIN 51032 limit values for dissolution of health hazards in household utensils