Bottled water: how do you know it is not tap water?

Holidaymakers in South Africa’s drought-stricken areas looking for a healthy, guilt-free alternative to the tap when it comes to slaking their thirst and staying hydrated should reach for the bottled water bottle this year.
This is the message from South African National Bottled Water Association CEO, Charlotte Metcalf, who pointed out that water — in all its forms — is a vital component of the human diet, especially during the heat of a South African summer.
And this year, particularly when travelling in or visiting drought-stricken areas, they should reach for bottled water instead of tap to help reduce the pressure on already severely stressed municipal water distribution systems.
“More than 90% of packaged waters in South Africa are either natural water or water defined by origin.
This means that 90% of the industry is water sourced from underground sustainable sources or springs,” she said.
“Since no water from any of these sources enters the municipal system, the fact that these sources are used for bottled water has no impact at all on the amount of water South Africa’s municipalities and Government departments have available to distribute.
“Further, given that less than 10% of all water bottled and sold in South Africa is defined as packaged water but that the entire bottled water industry accounts for only 8.9% of the entire non-alcoholic packaged beverage industry, just under 1% (0.89%) of non-alcoholic packaged beverages sold in South Africa is prepared water, or water which could come from a municipal system.
Metcalf added that water is the best packaged beverage option for the environment, as it has the lightest environmental footprint of all packaged beverages, particularly when you recycle as the bottle’s impact on the environment can be reduced immediately by 25% when you do so.
When you’re out and about and empty a plastic container (water, iced tea, colddrink, sunscreen etc), bring it home for recycling if there are no recycling options around you.
• Keep the cap on.

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