In the hierarchy of water, from municipal to well to purchased, bottled water is generally heralded as the purest drinking water you can get.
But is it really?
Often, the bottled water for which you pay a high premium is simply the same water you get from the tap, run through a purification process. In other words, it’s the same thing you could do with your faucet and a Big Berkey. (And if you add some special filters, you’ll be sure to get the fluoride out.)
A report from Business Insider reveals that the most expensive and widely distributed brands are quite a disappointment. Dasani and Nestle are simply pumped from local water sources (often in drought-stricken places like California). Aquafina comes straight from public water sources. SmartWater is pretty smart when it comes to making a buck – it’s simply municipal tap water that has been purified.
Poland Spring is actually from natural springs up in Maine. Deer Park and Crystal Geiser are spring water sourced from springs across the US. Ozarka is spring water from Texas.
This animated map shows exactly where in the United States the water is coming from.
In my book, The Prepper’s Water Survival Guide, I wrote at length about the potentially harmful chemical treatments added to municipal water sources. Even with “purification”, you have to wonder if the fluoride and choramination byproducts are actually removed from the water before it’s bottled, particularly the water that comes straight from the taps.
Personally, I’ll be skipping the bottled tap water (which across the board is actually more expensive) and going with the spring water.