Water is Water...Or is it?

Did you know that bottled water is sometimes nothing more than purified tap water? Have you ever wondered if your so-called “spring water” really came from that mountain or glacier pictured on the bottle? Despite the fact that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has strict labeling rules for bottled water, it’s up to you to learn the differences between bottled waters and — to familiarize yourself with the tricks of the trade. There are three major types of bottled water:

1 Purified water/drinking water is tap water that has been treated to improve safety, taste, and quality.

2 Spring water is water that flows naturally from the earth and is collected directly at the source.

3 Mineral water is spring water that contains dissolved solids (minerals in no more than 250 parts per million) that come directly from the source.

Though the FDA states that drinking water can never be labeled spring water — and spring water can never be labeled mineral water — manufacturers can use misleading images on their packaging as long as they don’t claim in writing that the water came from the location in the picture. This means your water probably didn’t come from that mountain or glacier. Keep that in mind the next time you choose your bottle of water based on the pretty picture.