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Organic Consumers Association

The Six Worst Bottled Water Brands

The Environmental Working Group analyzed the company websites and product labels of over 170 varieties of bottled water to see if the companies disclosed information on where water came from, how the water was treated, and whether the results of tests to ensure purity were revealed.

The researchers also called the bottled water companies to see if they would willingly give information to consumers.

More than half of the bottled water products failed the transparency test. Almost 20 percent didn't say where their water comes from, and an additional 32 percent did not disclose any information on treatment or purity of water.

According to Yahoo Green:

    "Only three brands earned the highest possible ... Gerber Pure Purified Water, Nestle Pure Life Purified Water, and Penta Ultra-Purified Water ...

    [S]ix brands got the worst marks in EWG's report ... Whole Foods Italian Still Mineral Water, Vintage Natural Spring Water, Sahara Premium Drinking Water, O Water Sport Electrolyte Enhanced Purified Drinking Water, Market Basket Natural Spring Water, and Cumby's Spring Water."

Sources:
  Yahoo Green January 5, 2011
  Environmental Working Group Report January 2011

Dr. Mercola's Comments:

    Again, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) steps up to the plate and delivers the actual facts about what's going on.

    When you pay up to 1,900 times more for something, you expect it to be worth it, but when it comes to bottled water most of the benefits are pure fantasy. What's worse, most bottled water companies hide the truth about their product in order to keep this profitable scheme going.

Majority of Companies Refuse to Divulge What's Really in Their Bottles

    The EWG set out to find the answers to three simple, basic questions about bottled water that consumers have a right to know:

        * Where does the water come from?
        * Is it purified, and if so, how?
        * Is the water tested, and what, if any, contaminants have been found?

    Interestingly, many bottled water companies will not supply you with the answers to these questions. According to the EWG, nine out of the top ten best-selling brands fail to provide answers to all three. Only one of the 173 bottled water products surveyed-NestlĂ©'s Pure Life Purified Water-discloses this information right on the label, and provides information for requesting a water quality test report.

    In all, only three bottled water products received a good rating for transparency from the EWG:

       1. NestlĂ©'s Pure Life Purified Water
       2. Gerber Pure Purified Water
       3. Penta Ultra-Purified Water

    For the least transparent of the bunch, please see the EWG report. All in all, 18 percent of bottled waters do not tell you where their water comes from, and 32 percent do not disclose anything about the treatment or the purity of the water.

    Why is this?

    Could it be because the truth doesn't justify the exorbitant price tag? After all, why would anyone knowingly pay a premium for something that is in many cases indistinguishable from regular tap water!

Bottled Water is No Guarantee of Purity

    Yes, about 40 percent of bottled water IS regular tap water, which may or may not have received any additional treatment. In fact, most municipal tap water must adhere to stricter purity standards than the bottled water industry. The EPA requires large public water suppliers to test for contaminants as often as several times a day, but the FDA requires private bottlers to test for contaminants only once a week, once a year, or once every four years, depending on the contaminant.


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