Imagine a piece of equipment that is perfectly shaped to lift metal drums and then dump it precisely into a vat where it can be processed by factory equipment. Something like this has been envisioned before and has now been perfected with a commercially available drum lifter and dumper. This was not cobbled together in a lab to meet the needs of a specific customer; it is a tried and true piece of equipment that has satisfied many producers.
Plenty of chemicals are still stored in metal drums. They range from oils to solvents to caustic materials. Metal containers are very safe because of the strength of the lid and the unlikelihood that the container will be ruptured or burst by stacking. Continue to use these safe and cost-effective packages by simply investing in a lifter able to accurately handle them.