Do you know what’s in that bottle of Dasani water you’re drinking? Coca Cola, the manufacturers of Dasani bottled water says you do. In fact, just recently, a company spokesperson was able to convince a consumer advocate’s group that it wasn’t necessary to label their bottles of Dasani as tap water because you – the consumer – already know that.
Well, do you? Apparently, full disclosure is only necessary if it doesn’t hurt the bottom line of a giant corporation like Coca Cola. That explains why the label of Dasani water says everything but “tap water” on it.
In Atlanta magazine’s June issue, there’s an excellent article on Dasani water and Coca Cola’s attempts to cover up the fact that they are bottling Atlanta municipal city water and selling it to us as “fresh” and “pure” water.
“The FDA’s definition of purified water does not require [that we label it with] the source,” argues Coca Cola. “We believe consumers know what they’re buying.”
My grandmother (RIP) used to say, “if you ask me no questions, I’ll tell you no lies.” In Coca Cola’s case, if you visit Dasani.com or call the company headquarters, they will tell you you’re drinking city water — they just won’t say so on the bottle.
Last year, Think Outside the Bottle, a consumer advocate group based in Boston, pressured Pepsi to put the words “Public Water Source” on it’s bottles of Aquafina. TOB then turned its sights on Coca Cola which so far has refused to put similar wording on its bottles of Dasani. Instead, the bottling giant placed the words “salt” and “reverse osmosis” on its bottles to explain the filtering process it uses to filter city water. The “salt” part is added at the end of the process to give the tap water its “fresh” taste.
Coca Cola argues that the wording it uses should suffice because the consumer is not confused as to Dasani’s source. To test that theory, Atlanta magazine interviewed people spotted drinking Dasani water at downtown’s Peachtree Center and SunTrust Plaza to see if they knew what the source of Dasani water was. Over two days, not one person who was asked knew that Dasani was tap water.
In case you’re wondering why all the fuss about city water vs. bottled water: city water contains fluoride, a necessary and vital mineral for the health of our teeth. If all you drink is bottled water, don’t expect to have any teeth left in your head by the time you’re my age.