Beer, mead, and winemaking equipment, such as buckets, carboys and spoons often seem similar to other items found around the home. However, in many cases, proper equipment and utensils are made of special materials, and this can influence the finished product.
Re-using plastic buckets from other sources, like buckets that previously held food products, is always a mistake. The food odors will have saturated the plastic, and will taint your wine, beer or mead.
Plastic items not intended for food purposes, such as brand new garbage pails must never be used for home fermentation. The pigments, UV protectants and plasticizers (chemicals used to keep plastic from becoming brittle) will leach into your product and could affect your health. Saving a few dollars by using suspect equipment is not worth it.