UK bottled water usage rises 10% amid tap water contamination fears

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Demand for bottled water in the UK has increased by 10% as individuals shun tap water fearing contaminants, lime scale, and micro-plastics, according to TAPP Water, a UK start-up for smart-home water filtering devices.

In a recent survey commissioned by TAPP Water in which 500 people took part, 42% said they did not trust or like the taste of tap water, with 27% believing that limescale was a major problem in the tap water in their homes.

Also, a quarter of the respondents believed that the tap water contained “a variety of contaminants”, while 12% were of the belief that that unclean pipes represented a serious problem in their home.

The survey further uncovered that 38% of the participants believed that bottled water was healthier with 31% saying it tastes better than tap water. Some 16% of the respondents mainly drank bottled water.

“Through this piece of research, unlike any in the market, we sought to uncover the correlation between tap water consumption and plastic bottle usage in the UK. Our aim was to understand why consumers are eschewing tap water in favour of purchasing plastic water bottles,” said Magnus Jern, co-founder of TAPP Water.

According to Jern, consumers could be educated about the safety, health, cost and environmental benefits of consuming “filtered, clean, tap water” as an answer to the “plastic crisis”.

In the past 30 years, consumption of water in plastic bottles has increased 10folds to 4.2 billion liters in 2016, despite the UK having some of the best tap water in the world. 

Some 82% of respondents in the survey also claimed that they recycle the plastic bottles they buy.

In reality, 43% of plastic bottles end up in landfills or incineration plants. 

Earlier this month, the company launched its new tap water filter TAPP2, which increases filtering power with fully biodegradable while offering connectivity to mobile apps for monitoring filter usage.

The company claims that TAPP2 cartridges, made with biodegradable PLA plastic, biodegradable rubber and an activated carbon block of 100% coconut shells, can remove more than 80 potential contaminants in tap water as well as reducing a further 50 contaminants. 

Those include chlorine, heavy metals and lime scale.

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