General Info and tips

Storage

Balloons are adversely affected by heat, wind and sun, so keep them stored in a cool, dark place, sealed in the packet until needed.

Balloon Measurements

Latex balloons are measured inflated.

Foil balloons are measured un-inflated.

The diameter of a balloon is always measured across its widest point

Durability

Below is a general guideline only. All tests completed indoors.

Latex 12” (30cm): 9-10 hours

Latex 12” (30cm) with Hi-FLOAT: 48hrs

Choking hazards with small children

It is important to be aware of suffocation hazards to children.

Un-inflated or broken balloons pose a choking or suffocation

hazard to young children.

We recommend:

  • Adult supervision.
  • Keep un-inflated balloons away from children.
  • Discard broken balloons at once.

A practical trick to ensure evenly filled balloons with a professional appearance!

Prestige Latex balloons measure 12” (30cm) in diameter. Place a chair this distance from the wall or table and place the inflated balloon in the gap to ensure that they are evenly filled. This will give a professional appearance and ensure that helium balloons last for the maximum length of time possible.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where does the latex used in balloons come from?

Latex balloons are produced from the milky sap of the rubber tree. Hevea brasilliensis. The rubber tree originated in the tropical forests of South America and was taken to Europe from Brazil. It is now grown on plantations in many tropical countries. The latex is collected in cups, as it drips from harmless cuts in the bark. The process is much like that used to collect maple syrup. The use of latex balloons and other products, such as surgical gloves, make rubber trees economically valuable, which discourages people from cutting them down.

Are latex balloons biodegradable?

Latex is a 100 percent natural substance that breaks down both in sunlight and water. The degradation process begins almost immediately. Oxidation, the “frosting” that makes latex balloons look as if they are losing their colour, is one of the first signs of the process. Exposure to sunlight quickens the process, but natural micro-organisms attack natural rubber even in the dark.

Research shows that under similar environmental conditions, latex balloons will biodegrade at about the same rate as a leaf from an oak tree. The actual total degradation time will vary depending on the precise conditions.

What happens to balloons that flyaway?

Often latex balloons are released either on purpose or accidentally. Research shows that most of these latex balloons – the ones that are well-tied and have no structural flaws – rise to an altitude of about 8 kms, where they freeze, breaking into spaghetti-like pieces that scatter as they return to earth. While we do know that animals occasionally eat these soft slivers of rubber, the evidence indicates that pieces ultimately pass through the digestive system without harming the animal.

Are sea mammals at risk?

Although many stories have been repeated about sea creatures dying from balloons, extensive research by the industry and reporters has yet to verify one such story. In one study of 439 dead sea cows over an 8 year period. Cathy Beck of the US Fish & Wildlife Service did not find a single balloon inside a single deceased sea cow.

The most frequently cited case is one in which the Marine Mammal Stranding Centre in Briganite, New Jersey, USA found a balloon in the intestinal tract of a dead sea turtle. Bob Schoelkopf, the director of the Centre, has said himself that the balloon could not be identified as the cause of death.

What about balloon litter?

Balloons are not a significant littler problem. During a nationwide beach clean-up in the late 1990s, volunteers collected more than 614,433 bottles and cans, but found fewer than 32,000 balloon pieces. These pieces – collected over more than 4,600 miles of shoreline – would fit inside four trash bags.

However, The Balloon Council encourages consumers to dispose of balloons – like all products – properly. We support putting weights on all helium-filled balloons to keep them from floatin  away accidentally and ask consumers to put deflated balloons in the proper receptacles.

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