CIWEM's latest policy statement says "branding and bottling of water where there already exists a wholesome and safe supply of drinking water cannot be seen as a sustainable use of natural resources."
The bottling of mineral, spring and other drinking waters has become an international multi-billion pound industry, CIWEM observes. However, there is "no general health advantage" from such waters and the public should be protected from false claims.
Unlike tap water, bottled products are exempt from EU quality standards. CIWEM argues that bottlers should provide more information on their labels, such as results of chemical and bacteriological analyses, the analysis date and bottling date.
Moreover, waters not proven safe for use in infant feeds should carry a warning.