Wednesday, July 26, 2006

The Costs & Safety of Bottled Water

Recently, we purchased a filter system for our kitchen faucet. It's a frugal option to bottled water.

Believe it or not, bottled water may not be the safest option for you and your family, according to report from the University of Florida (Pinellas County Extension. My favorite part of the report (highlighted below) is about how some companies just sell bottled municipal water, which is otherwise free.

In my own research about bottled water, I've spotted many labels where municipal sources are listed as the water stream.

Here's a quick snippet from the report:

"Sales of bottled water in this country have exploded in recent years. Bottled water, in spite of its popularity, may not be safer or more healthful than tap water. Some studies have found that tap water tends to have lower bacterial counts than bottled. Also, some brands are just packaged municipal tap water, sometimes further treated, sometimes not. In addition, bottled water is costly and bulky. Thick opaque containers can impart a plastic flavor. Big rigid polycarbonate water-cooler jugs can leave chemical residues.

If you care about conservation of resources, tap water is by far the best choice, according to the World Wide Fund For Nature. Millions of tons of plastic are used every year to make water bottles. Disposing of these bottles contributes to air pollution. The FDA regulates bottled water safety using EPA water standards and establishes definitions for labeling.

If you buy bottled water, you’re probably better off buying brands bottled by members of the International Bottled Water Association because the National Sanitation Foundation inspects their plants. "


Through a Glass Darkly said...

In my case, chlorine and other things that a simple tap filter doesn't catch make me sick (literally). My solution is to buy water from Whole Foods that's been through 7 types of filtration. I refill 4 3-gallon containers each week from the in-store filtration system, and then I toss in some drops of Alkalife to make the water more alkaline and tastier. I avoid most of the waste of bottled water but still get the benefits--at 39 cents a gallon!

Frugal Duchess: Sharon Harvey Rosenberg said...

That's a great tip! Thanks so much.