Are you kidding me?
Does anyone know how far the Fiji Islands are from America? Between 5,500 and 8,000 miles, depending on where in the States you’re talking about. No really, that’s how far they’re shipping those little square bottles of water just so we can pay a premium and think we’re cool for drinking them.
It’s better water though, right? I mean, it’s not just plain old water? It’s got to be better… Why else would we pay upwards of $9.00 a bottle for it at a trendy NYC hotel?
Counter to its claims, FIJI Water is neither better nor sustainable:
- There is little difference in getting water from your tap (supplied from a highly-regulated, local municipal facility) than from an artesian source, especially when that artesian source is downstream from the heavy-metal laden tailings of a gold mine.*
- There have also been findings of high bacteria counts in some bottles of FIJI Water, which originate in tropical climates and are stored for long periods and shipped long distances unrefrigerated. *
- The claims they make on their website concerning their sustainability practices are also misleading and easily deconstructed.*
Hey, speaking of kidding, take a look at the grin on David Gilmour’s face. Who’s he? He’s the Canadian “businessman” that started FIJI Water back in the 90s. He talked the desperate Fiji government into giving him an “Iron Clad” 99-year lease on the aquifer where the water comes from. And then there’s Lynda Resnick… She’s grinning too. She and her husband purchased FIJI Water for 50 million dollars in 2004. FIJI Water went on to become America’s number one imported water. The thing is though – and this is going to really kill you – the Fijians do not have access to the FIJI Water aquifer and the island has severe water problems, including a broken-down water delivery infrastructure and water rationing.
To add to the joke, the Fiji government doesn’t tax FIJI Water Company; when taxes were proposed, the company shut down its operations in protest until the government desisted. So, this small, third world country receives little benefit from the exploitation of a major natural resource by a first world conglomerate. The aquifer that FIJI Water draws from is an incredible resource that should be used to benefit the people of Fiji, first and foremost, a nation where water issues abound.
So next time you reach for one of those square bottles, think again. You can choose a more healthy and ethical option.