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What’s in a bottle of water?

Now we’ve all been preached to at some point in our lives about the importance of drinking water, in fact a minimum of 1.5 litres a day. But how often do you ever consider the quality of the water you’re gulping down? And I am not referring to bottled versus tap water – but mineral v. spring v. drinking bottled water. Yes there is a huge difference.

In effect, there are three families of bottled water.

1. Natural mineral water; underground, protected water which is stable in mineral composition, micro-biologically pure and bottled at source. Mineral content MUST appear on the label. No disinfection treatments are allowed and no additional minerals, vitamins or other ingredients are permitted, only carbon dioxide can be added or removed (helps with digestion apparently)! Masafi labels itself ‘pure natural mineral water’ but in fact it’s drinking water.

2. Spring water; underground water which is intended for human consumption in its natural state, and bottled at the source. Spring water has to comply with the conditions of exploitation and the microbiological requirements applicable to natural mineral water. The difference with no 1 is that several types of physical treatments are permitted, and the mineral content does not have to be labeled. Another local culprit is Gulfa who claims to be spring, but yet again it’s drinking water.

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