Associatie Watercoolers Nederland (AWCN): bottled water and tap water not each other’s enemy!

October 17, 2012

Bottled water and tap water are constantly compared in the Dutch media and the verdict is always the same: tap water is good, bottled water is bad for the environment and for your wallet!

Nowadays more and more political parties and government institutions promote the drinking of tap water as it being the “best choice”.  President of the Dutch Water Cooler Association (AWCN) Michael Hoogendijk pleads for more balance in the media and closer attention to the real facts on tap and bottled water.

Good guy/bad guy

Hoogendijk doesn’t understand the currently popular good guy/bad guy-approach. “Water from bottles or from the tap are not each other’s enemies; it is a choice that the consumer makes. There are many reasons to choose for bottled water or to choose for tap water; or both, we like to offer the consumer a choice.”  However, according to Hoogendijk that same consumer is often misled by the one-sided, negative and often incomplete reports published in the media.

The water cooler industry pays a lot of attention to the carbon footprint and environmental impact of bottled water. All bottled water is packaged in material that is 100% recyclable. Next to the environmental impact, the AWCN obliges its members to have their companies audited every year in order to ensure the quality and safety of the product.

In the Netherlands there are also very strict rulings for spring- and mineral water, laid down by the Ministry of Health (VWS). Sources of spring and mineral water need to be officially recognized by the Ministry of Health and are subject to strict control mechanisms. The consumer can therefore be sure that bottled water is safe and has a constant high level of quality.  Hoogendijk: “Tap water needs to undergo several treatments before it is safe to drink. Spring and mineral water is always pure, coming straight from the source. Otherwise we would not be allowed to sell it!

According to the media, the costs of bottled water would be outrageous. Hoogendijk: “What people often forget is that tap water needs a lot of treatment before it is ready to drink.  We never read the facts and figures on how much these treatments cost society.”

Directly released from AWCN

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