Packaged beverages and bottled water are the normal part of our today’s active lifestyle, but did you ever ask yourself how are they regulated and what do you really know about these products?
In this article, we will look at several facts every consumer should know about bottled water.
Regulation of bottled water
Bottled water is regulated in many countries around the world. In the United States, tap water is regulated by the EPA (the United States Environmental Protection Agency), but bottled water is under the scope of the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) because it is considered a food product. The Food and Drug Administration establishes maximum contaminant levels for various impurities and it has labeling requirements.
In addition, many United States states also have additional licensing and monitoring requirements for bottled water, which is sold within their territory. Water intended for non-U.S. markets, such as Ontario Bottled Water Association Model Bottled Water Code, Codex Alimentarius, European Union Directives, and others may be required to comply with local or United States requirements.
Purity of bottled water
This is not necessarily the case. Generally, bottled water doesn’t have to be contaminant free. However, it can’t contain any contaminant at a level that exceeds local or federal maximum allowable concentrations. In order to learn more about the quality of a certain brand, contact the company and request a copy of their newest water quality analysis.
How long bottled water can be stored
If the bottles are kept in the proper environment, unopened bottled water products can be stored for an indefinite period of time. Just like any other food product, bottled water should be stored in a pantry or other similar environment. Also, keep bottled water away from chemicals, such as gasoline, paints or cleaning compounds.
Furthermore, don’t store bottled water storage shed or garage where it could be exposed to sunlight, excessive heat or chemical fumes. In case you think your stored bottled water has been contaminated, boil or discard it before using it in an emergency.
Certificates of bottled water
In many countries, bottled water quality isn’t regulated. Although in some countries, companies are required to monitor and conduct regular testing of bottled water, they are not required for independent product quality testing by a third party. In order to provide extra assurance to their customers, companies that certify their bottled water are taking an additional step that their products comply with all applicable local and federal regulations.
Bottled or tap water
The quality of tap water varies from city to city, and the quality of bottled water also varies from one product to the next. Therefore, the quality depends on the source water and the treatment it undergoes at the facilities where it’s bottled. You can request a copy of detailed independent analysis from your favorite bottled water company and a copy of your city’s annual water quality report. Those two reports can be compared in order to see which product best suits your personal needs.
Global consumption of bottled water
Each year global consumption of bottled water rises up by 10%. The slowest growth is in Europe, the faster growth is in places like South America and Asia, but North America is still a leader in total consumption.