(CHICAGO, MIAMI, LA, NY – USA / SARDINIA, ITALY) What is Really in that Bottle of Water?
Acqua Smeraldina pure artesian water in a class of its own
Imagine being the manager of a busy Chicago bakery café. At the end of each day, as you’re leaving your popular eatery, you grab a bottle of sparkling Acqua Smeraldina. It makes the commute in Chicago traffic that much more manageable.
For Nic Andrews, general manager of Chicago’s Labriola Bakery Café, that bottle of Smeraldina is a part of his everyday routine.
"I am on the go from the time I walk in the door," Andrews explains. "When I grab that ice-cold bottle of Smeraldina on the way out the door, it is the best thing ever. It’s a quality water. It has a fantastic profile to it and the finish is very, very clean."
Andrews and his business associates made the decision to serve Acqua Smeraldina to Labriola Bakery Café’s patrons when they were taste-testing products before the restaurant’s November 2008 grand opening.
Andrews knew right away that he wanted to serve Acqua Smeraldina alongside the bakery café’s handmade artisan breads.
"We have a great reputation for high-quality products, and Smeraldina is like this secret we have over here," says Andrews. "Part of the reason-other than it just being a great product-that we feature Smeraldina is because we approach things from a truly Italian, really high-quality perspective. We want to show people what they’ve been missing their whole lives. We’re going to spoil (our guests) when they walk through our doors, and Smeraldina fits so perfectly with that."
While Andrews and the patrons of the Labriola Bakery Café have been let in on the little secret about Smeraldina, millions of Americans just grab the first bottled water they see on the shelf. Many consumers have no idea that the water they are drinking may have come directly from the tap.
Each year, the average American consumes a staggering 30 gallons of bottled water, and consumption of bottled water in the U.S. has tripled in the last 10 years.
Some of the most popular and best-selling brands are merely purified tap water. Other classifications include spring water, mineral water and sparkling water. Then there is artesian water-water that comes from confined aquifers-which many consider to be the purest water available.
The FDA, which regulates the safety of bottled water, provides very specific definitions of the various types of water:
Purified Water – Water that is produced by distillation, deionization, reverse osmosis or other suitable processes and that meets the definition of "purified water" in the U.S.
Mineral Water – Water containing not less than 250 ppm total dissolved solids that originates from a geologically and physically protected underground water source.
Sparkling Water – Water that, after treatment and possible replacement of carbon dioxide, contains the same amount of carbon dioxide that it had at emergence from the source.
Spring Water – Water derived from an underground formation from which water flows naturally to the surface of the earth at an identified location.
Artesian Water – Water from a well tapping a confined aquifer in which the water level stands at some height above the top of the aquifer.1.
While the FDA guidelines define categories of bottled water, it is up to the individual companies to monitor the quality of their water. The Smeraldina Corporation places a high premium on research and development, conducting more than 100 tests every day on its water and all the materials used to package it. In addition, Acqua Smeraldina is certified ISO 9001 and ISO 14000, a standard that few bottled water companies have managed to achieve.
"There are many spring and artesian waters on the market that are not as pure as they claim, and there are a lot of substandard waters that are sold as premium waters," says Giuseppe Pinna, vice president of the Smeradina Corporation. "Just like municipal waters have to comply to government standards, Smeraldina is very much in favor of setting high standards for bottled water as well. The stricter the standards, the better for the consumers."
Acqua Smeraldina’s superior quality begins directly at the source: an underground aquifer with a natural granite filtration system. The aquifer is located 1,000 feet under the Monte di Deu ("Mountain of God") in Sardinia, Italy-a remote island in the Mediterranean Sea considered one of the environmentally cleanest locations in Europe.
It takes hundreds of years for rainwater to slowly descend through the Mountain of God’s granite filtration system. This natural process enriches the water with minerals and clears it of its impurities without releasing any sediment into the product. The result is a unique, clean and light mineral water that numerous doctors and experts recommend for its perfect balance of sodium, chlorides and bicarbonates, which help to correctly maintain arterial blood pressure. Acqua Smeraldina contains a high percentage of potassium, which helps to reinforce muscle tone, while the calcium and magnesium levels give the water diuretic properties.
But behind the federally mandated standards that qualify Acqua Smeraldina as an artesian water is the simple story of the homeland from which the water comes. From its spectacular granite mountains to its emerald waters and beautiful beaches, Sardinia is a gem in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. The island has a sparse population, little industry and no intensive agriculture, all of which have contributed to Sardinia’s reputation as being an unspoiled island.
Sardinia is also considered one of just five "Blue Zones" around the world because of the number of residents who live active lives past the age of 100. In fact, bluezones.com, states that Sardinia has "20 times as many 100-year-olds as the United States."2.
For nearly 25 years, Sardinians have been enjoying the taste and health benefits of Acqua Smeraldina. With recently opened distribution facilities in Chicago and Fairfield, New Jersey-and new ones planned for Miami and Los Angeles-Acqua Smeraldina is finally making its way to American consumers, much to the delight of water connoisseurs like Nic Andrews.
"The public buys a bottle of water and if it’s in a beautiful bottle with a nice label, people just assume that it’s good without having any knowledge whatsoever," says Andrews. "If you were to take a taste test, blind or otherwise, with Smeraldina and its competitors, you would discover that Smeraldina is just such a better water because of it’s upfront crispness and this very clean finish. Smeraldina is such a superior product."
For more information on Smeraldina, please visit http://www.smeraldina.us/.
1. Food and Drug Administration. "Regulation of Bottled Water." July 8, 2009. http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Testimony/ucm170932.htm
2. "The Science Behind Blue Zones." http://www.bluezones.com/about