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The bottled water purification process
All of this must meet those federal guidelines drawn up by the FDA. These include good manufacturing practices, sanitary facilities and operations, quality standards, labeling standards, and quality production controls and processes. States will also regulate via inspections of both the source and the production facility, and this varies greatly from state to state. Finally, the processes must meet industry standards, which are stricter than the FDA. The IBWA states that it maintains its own set of standards, where all members are subject to an annual, unannounced plant inspection by a nationally recognized third-party organization. Not all water bottles are members of this trade organization, but more than 80% of water does come from member companies. It may be best to drink water from an IBWA member, as this process has three agencies watching, rather than just two. Now that we know a little about the process and regulations, let's look at the process a little closer on specific types of water. Yes. The process is a little more complicated than filling a bottle and capping it. In fact, deciding to carry bottled water requires much insight, with two major considerations being the water source and what equipment will be used to produce it.
Source: The source of water plays a key role in the quantity and quality of water one wants to produce, as well as to remain profitable. About a quarter of all bottled water comes from municipal supplies, with the rest coming from natural sources like springs and wells. But, regardless of where the water is flowing from, is privy to all the aforementioned testing from the agencies. One thing to take into consideration is whether organic and inorganic compounds are present at the source and if it is practical or not to invest in equipment to remove them.
Equipment: Who wants water that is not clear, smells funny and tastes weird? The organic compounds, like metal ions, in water can contribute to these things. So, the processes mentioned above can help literally clear up the water. To reiterate, these are some of the processes: Membrane filtration can remove organic impurities, metal, and other ions. Ozonization can break down organic constituents and reduce their odor potential while also sanitizing to minimize further microbial contamination. But, whichever filtration system is chosen, the plant will be built to spec.
The two biggest selling types of bottled water are spring water and purified water. And, although the end result may taste the same, the processes of filtering are quite different. With spring water, the source must be an actual spring. The label must say so. And, the spring must be able to sustain the water production to make the choice to bottle it from there an economical choice. A typical spring water treatment process includes a filtration system that generally runs in series5-micron filtration to 0.2-micron filtration. After the filtration process, the spring water is then usually treated with ozone to disinfect and preserve the water in the bottle. By maintaining the nature of the spring water, ozone is considered to be an acceptable disinfectant. Ozone oxidizes bacteria and organic materials and, over time, reverts back to oxygen.
Purified water is the most highly treated and closely regulated bottled water produced by the FDA and IBWA, but also offers the most consistent and highest quality water to the consumer. It is noted that consumers of bottled water prefer the taste of purified water over other types. Bottlers say the consistent flavor is a result of the purification process. There are three primary processes used to produce purified water: deionization, distillation and reverse osmosis. Most bottlers choose RO over the others because of the many advantages, including reduced cost and increased performance. Some of these advantages also include removing nearly all organic compounds and up to 99% of ions and it rejects 99% of viruses, bacteria, and fever-producing substances. Also, RO is more energy efficient.
So the next time you pick a case of water off the shelf, look closer at the label. Now that you have read up on the process, you can tell the difference between the identical-looking fluids. You will know where it came from, how it was regulated, how it was purified, and which is the safest. To bottle water at home, reverse osmosis filters can be purchased which will save money in the long run, as the average American spends over $300 per year on bottled water.