Consumer News

CATrends: Microplastics in Bottled Water

Lawsuits allege that several brands contain microplastics despite being marketed as “natural spring water.”

Consumer News

CATrends: Microplastics in Bottled Water

As we approach Earth Day on April 22, microplastics, or fragments of plastic less than 5 millimeters (0.2 inches) in length, are nearly everywhere. They’re in our lakes and rivers, in our food, in us, and, according to a new trend in class-action litigation, in the bottled water we drink.

Since January, class-action lawsuits have been filed against at least six bottled water brands – including Poland Spring, Fiji, Evian, Arrowhead, Ice Mountain and Crystal Geyser – alleging the companies’ products contain microplastics despite being marketed as “natural spring water.” According to the lawsuits, the microplastics originate from the plastic bottles themselves, as well as from the bottling and shipping process.

“Microplastic contamination is a pervasive problem in the plastic water bottle industry, with studies finding microplastic particles in over 90% of bottled water tested, with as many as 325 particles per liter tested,” states the Poland Spring lawsuit, filed last month.

“Studies of the impacts of microplastics in the human body are emerging, finding that exposure may be toxic and lead to numerous health problems, including heart problems, endocrine disruption and chronic inflammation.”

The lawsuit alleges that “every bottle of Poland Spring contains dangerous levels of microplastics,” despite being marketed as “100% Natural Spring Water.”

A reasonable consumer purchases Poland Spring believing they are getting a bottle of nothing but spring water from nature. Reasonable consumers, however, would not deem Poland Spring to be 100% natural spring water if they knew that the water in each bottle contains … microplastics.

The majority of the complaints were filed by the same law firm.

Find more of our coverage on bottled water here.

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