Bottled water. Is it fresh or dated in Taiwan?

Bottled water is two years old say some reporters now.

Bottled mineral water could be almost two years old by the time it is bought by consumers. I seem to remember the Taiwan News once doing a series on old bottled water.

I once drank some bottled water and got sick. In Keelung. Is is really good water there or just taken from taps like some people say?

Supermarket shoppers who buy bottled water in the belief that it is fresher than tap water are unaware that it may in fact have sat on a warehouse shelf for most of its use-by date.

“People have a perception-that bottled water is fresh because it’s been sealed in a bottle, unsullied by human hands. But in fact it has probably spent most of that time in hot warehouses and on hot supermarket shelves.”

F –
I thought you were going to count to 10 before posting…and at least that long before starting threads. :unamused:

Clean, bottled water cannot expire. If the water was clean when it was put into the bottle, there is no reason why it should be contaminated 2 or even 20 years later.

If the water is clean then there is no substrate any microorganism could grow on. The only risk that might remain is partial decomposition of the bottle material itself, so chemicals get into the water. However, you would have to store PET bottles under really extreme conditions for that to happen.

[quote=“wolf_reinhold”]F –
I thought you were going to count to 10 before posting…and at least that long before starting threads. :unamused:[/quote]At least this one mentions Taiwan :laughing:

[quote=“t.ukyo”]Clean, bottled water cannot expire. If the water was clean when it was put into the bottle, there is no reason why it should be contaminated 2 or even 20 years later.

If the water is clean then there is no substrate any microorganism could grow on. The only risk that might remain is partial decomposition of the bottle material itself, so chemicals get into the water. However, you would have to store PET bottles under really extreme conditions for that to happen.[/quote]

Aren’t you assuming in the first place that the water is “clean” and “pure”? I don’t know how many water companies are actually that good. I know you wrote ‘if’, but seems to be that’s a pretty big ‘if’.

You can tap the side of the bottle with your index finger. If it makes a “thump” then it’s probably fresh. If it makes any kind of jiggling, gurgling, or fizzing sound then it’s probably gone over.

[quote]Clean, bottled water cannot expire. If the water was clean when it was put into the bottle, there is no reason why it should be contaminated 2 or even 20 years later.

If the water is clean then there is no substrate any microorganism could grow on. The only risk that might remain is partial decomposition of the bottle material itself, so chemicals get into the water. However, you would have to store PET bottles under really extreme conditions for that to happen.[/quote]
In theory that should be the case.
The properties of water allow it to stay fresh indefinitely. However nearly all water contains the smallest amount of bacteria, that bacteria in the water will grow and reproduce if there are even the smallest amount of mocro-organisms present.
The most serious problem with bottled water in Taiwan is that it is stored in plastic (PC or PVC) bottles. Plastic is porous and allows minute amounts of air and bacteria to contaminate the water. Much of the PC or PVC plastic in Taiwan comes from recycled plastic from china, thus it is contaminated with other often toxic chemicals.
By oxygenating the water it is possible to preserve it from bacterial growth in plastic bottles but does little for other contaminates. The same is true for many other methods of stopping bacterial growth, ie gamma exposure or UV treatment. The only way to be sure you are getting pure (fresh) uncontaminated water is to distill it yourself. Bottled water companies in Taiwan practice Chinese business ethics effecting the quality and safety of their product.

My point is, that if the water was safe to drink when it was put into the bottle, it will stay this way as long as the bottle is not opened.

Bacteria have some nutritional needs in order to grow, for example a carbon source, a nitrogen source, a phospor source and some other elements. These needs are not met in a closed bottle of clean water (where should the nitrogen come from? The air is an unlikely source since nitrogen fixing organisms need an organic C source, which is not available at all).

The pores of plastic are not big enough to let bacteria slip in. Air gets in probably, bigger molecules are not likely (put a PET bottle into an oil bath and see what happens after a week. I haven’t tried this myself, but my guess is the oil will not get inside the bottle). On a molecular scale bacteria are huge.

However, I read some article a while ago about the quality of bottled water in Taiwan, and some brands basically seemed to put tap water into the bottle.
I remember the best brand in terms of contamination was “drink more water” (duo he shuei).

You mean the best brand in terms of no contamination, right? Just thought I clarify that. I remember someone posted elsewhere that her cat would only drink Duo He Shui, a.k.a. “More”, bottled water of all the local brands. I guess that’s as good a litmus test as any.

Bottled water must be different than tap water because filtered tap water tastes fine, but bottled water tastes terrible in my opinion. I’ved tried several different brands, but they all taste so bad that I have to spit it out right away. Does anyone else here think that Taiwanese bottled water tastes terrible, or is it just me?

And even if bottled water didn’t taste so bad, I still wouldn’t buy it because it doesn’t make any sense to pay 15 NT for only 600 mL of water when you can buy a whole 20 liters of filtered water for only 30 NT from one of the big filtration vending machines on the side of the road. (Or sometimes they have a big cylindrical 1000-liter tank with a hose and nozzle, for the same price.) The water from those machines tastes great, and the government checks it every few months for bacteria, protozoans, heavy metals, pesticides, and lots of other contaminants.

Costco, I’m beginning to fell I should be getting paid for promoting their goods, has Canadian Spring Water for less than NT$10 a bottle.

Buy bottled water by the box if you want to save money, then - a 24-pack can get you 3.5 NT per bottle. They have boxes of water running from 49 - 159 NT outside all of the local grocery stores.

That’s still much more expensive than buying water from the filtration machines on the side of the road, which only costs 1.5 NT per liter, which is only 0.9 NT per 600 mL (the size of a bottle).

Cheaper still and gauranteed to be pure, distill the water yourself. You can buy a distiller at nearly any appliance store.

Is that right? How much are they, roughly? Or are you referring to those reverse osmosis machines?

elixa.com/distiller/

I get those 5 to 6 liters bottled water. Sometimes they taste very funny at the end. I think sediments got settled down to the bottle and that’s why it tastes so bad? I was wonder if it’s the plastic going bad and I am drinking that? I actually pour from the 5 liter bottle to 1.5 liter smaller bottles and leave them in the fridge. and when the water is almost done and near the bottom of the bottle, it usually tastes very weird, anyone know what I am talking about?

TW bottled water is safe to drink right? anyone ever heard people get sick from it?