Where Does Bottled Water Come From?
Bottled water comes from all kinds of sources. Where does yours come from? Just take a look at the bottle and see (then ask yourself why you paid $1.50 for that bottle).
Where does your bottled water come from?
Chances are your bottled water comes from the same place your tap water comes from.
About 45% of all bottled water comes directly from municipal sources (the exact same sources that pipe straight into your house), and the other 55% come from spring sources. You’ll see the words spring or mineral printed on the label.
The funny thing about that, though, is municipal water often comes from similar spring or natural sources.
So on a technicality, all your bottled water comes from municipal sources. But if that doesn’t quite sit right with you, at least 45% of all bottled water comes straight from a municipal water treatment facility.
How can I know more about my bottled water?
Take a look at the label on your bottled water.
In Canada, all bottled water must carry the following basic labelling information:
- Common name.
- Net quantity.
- Name and address of the responsible company.
- List of ingredients (if it consists of more than one ingredient).
- Nutritional information, including fluoride ion content.
The spring and mineral water label requires more info:
- Dissolved mineral salt content.
- Statement indicating whether ozone or fluoride has been added.
- Statement relating the geographic location of the underground source of the water.
The label of bottled water, other than spring or mineral water, must also include a description of any treatment the water has undergone.
In the U.S., the FDA monitors and inspects bottled water products and processing plants under its food safety program. When FDA inspects plants, it verifies that the plant's product water and operational water supply are obtained from an approved source; inspects washing and sanitizing procedures; inspects bottling operations; and determines whether the companies analyze their source water and product water for contaminants.
But does it really matter?
Bottled water is needlessly expensive, damaging to the environment (the plastic bottles wash up on island shores thousands of miles away, poisoning the environment), and inconvenient compared to the alternative.
A water filter on your home tap provides cheaper water that’s just as clean. Maybe even cleaner.
Even if your municipal water supply is less than trustworthy, the right water filter removes:
- Cysts such as Giardia lamblia, Entamoeba histolytica and Cryptosporidium parvum.
- Volatile Organic Chemicals (VOCs), including THMs.
- Chlorine taste and odour.
- Dirt particles and cloudiness.
- Algae and mould.
- Oxidized iron.
- Oxidized manganese.
- Oxidized sulfides.
- Particles 1/2 micron and larger in size.
- Limescale build-up in appliances using water.