What is the Source of Bottled Water? 

The source of bottled water varies but often includes the same sources as tap water. These include municipal water, natural springs, and wells. 

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Bottled water is a popular drink and is one of the fastest-growing consumer products in the world. It is also one of the lowest carbon emitters of all packaged drinks, with a growing number of companies becoming carbon-neutral certified. 

It comes in a variety of forms and can be made from many different sources, but the most common is filtered tap water that has been enhanced or purified. This may be done by distillation or reverse osmosis. The water is usually then further enriched with minerals and electrolytes, making it a more enjoyable drink than tap water. 

Some bottled water brands are able to source the water directly from the watershed where it is drawn from, which is called “artesian” water. This is a healthier option than drinking from the local tap supply and it may even be more cost-effective. 

The other main bottled water source is sourced from wells or springs that are protected and under strict regulations, so they cannot be polluted. These are considered to be the best type of bottled water and are sold as “natural” or “mineral” waters. 

Mineral or Spring Water?

Natural or mineral water is defined by the EU as “microbiologically wholesome water, originating in an underground source, protected from all risk of pollution and emerging from a spring tapped at one or more natural or bore exits. It must be clear, consistent in dissolved mineral levels and receive official recognition on a list of approved European waters.” 

This type of bottled water is most often preferred by those who have concerns about the quality of their local tap water. For these consumers, it is usually a good idea to choose a brand that has their own treatment plant and is regulated by the government. 

Fluoridated Water 

Some bottled water brands add fluoride to their product, but this must be reflected on the label. In some cases, this is done as a dental health benefit and the FDA regulates how much can be added to a bottled water bottle. 

Distilled or Demineralized Water?

When water is distilled or demineralized, it has been treated to remove most of the natural minerals that occur in the groundwater that it flows through. This makes the water taste flat and has a lower total dissolved solids content than the natural source. 

While a small number of minerals can be added to natural or demineralized water, it is not usually necessary. This is why most bottled water brands sell their filtered tap water as “natural” or “mineral.” 

The most important thing to consider when choosing bottled water is how it has been treated and whether it is safe for your health. The FDA has strict guidelines for how bottled water must be tested and regulated, so be sure to read the labels carefully.