Bottled Water Facts

The truth about bottled water

There are a number of myths related to bottled water that we as water experts find important to dispel for our customers. All facts on this page are supported by the FDA, EPA, and IBWA. Links to related bottled water regulations are provided for additional information.

Myth #1

Bottled water isn’t as strictly regulated as tap water and manufacturers have very few guidelines to follow.

Fact

Bottled water isn’t as strictly regulated as tap water and manufacturers have very few guidelines to follow.

The FDA has established set regulations that all bottled water companies must follow to ensure bottled water remains healthy and safe to drink

The federal bottled water regulations set by the FDA are as stringent as those established by the EPA for tap water, if not more so. Any differences are usually the result of a regulated substance not being found in bottled water or a regulation already existing under another FDA provision that applies to bottled water.

For example, because lead can leach from pipes into municipal water as it travels into homes, the EPA has set the limit for lead in water at 15 ppb (parts per billion). Since lead pipes aren’t used in the production of bottled water, the FDA has set the limit for lead in bottled water at 5 ppb (parts per billion).

The FDA bottled water quality regulations require bottled water companies to regularly sample and analyze their water. Samples must be found to be safe and sanitary. The FDA also monitors bottled water plant and equipment design, bottling procedures, and record keeping. Bottled water companies must pass regular inspections by the FDA as part of its food safety program, and some states require bottled water companies to obtain an annual license.