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Mineral vs Tap: What's the Best Water to Drink?

May 6, 2010

The fact of the matter is that there has been a never-ending series of deliberation between mineral water and tap water as the best water to drink. As the two opposing sides continue to bolster their own arguments, it is time to lay down the cards and see which is the best water to drink.     

Safety Issues

Mineral water’s quality is said to be of the utmost degree compared to ordinary drinking water. When it comes to the treatment process, there can be no assurance, given the perils of mass production. The methods and equipment used may not be very effective in removing certain contaminants, even if it has passed a barrage of tests and quality controls.
 
Meanwhile, tap water has been much maligned over the years, not only because of its apparent unreliability, but also because there simply has been a better-touted alternative. The common notion that pervades is that the source and treatment of tap water is of substandard condition.

Consumer Accessibility

With the advent of mineral water, this problem of accessibility has become all the more complicated. The necessity for water is then converted into a commodity instead of just being provided as a common good. Various new issues arise, such as the element of profitability for the producers, brand and price preferences, and the variable quality standards due to competition.         

The Cost

In terms of price, there can be no question that mineral water, being a consumer commodity, is far more expensive than tap water. The production and treatment of mineral water alone is doubly costly than tap water. Private water companies spend more on resources to acquire and process the product to their own specifications. In contrast to tap water's simple system of delivery, mineral water has to contend with the costs of various forms of delivery to stores and homes.    

Environmental Considerations

There are many concerns relating to the environment that mineral water has to contend with compared to tap water. The most glaring of them all is the use of bottles, usually plastic ones. Though they may be recycled properly, there are still a good percentage of them that wind up in those toxic landfills that harm the environment. Another concern is that since mineral water, as a commercial product, tends to be transported to various locations, it indirectly contributes to the increase of fossil fuel use and pollution due to gas emissions. Meanwhile, concerning tap water, the treatment plants used in processing are also liable to excess energy consumption and waste pollution.   

The Verdict

While there may have been a number of adverse points regarding mineral water, there are still some impressive benefits worthy of consideration, like the convenience, portability and general safety. Tap water, on the other hand, presents the cheaper option that is also relatively safe for human consumption and the environment. Since it will still boil down to individual preferences, as both quality and other merits remain quite at an impasse, the verdict is still out as to which is the best water to drink.    

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