Waiakea Water Redefines Sustainable: Could This Bottled Water Actually Be Worth It?

Waiakea water comes from a natural source in Hawaii

Consumers have been turning their backs on bottled water, and we applaud them for it: plastic bottles create excess waste and pollution and often contain filtered city water (as opposed to natural water from a source).

It’s usually just not worth it – but Waiakea Water may be the exception to the rule. This water, which comes from a pure, naturally alkaline source, is sold in eco-conscious packaging, and what’s more, the company has a global philosophy as well.

Waiakea Water: A Healthy, Sustainable Alternative

Waiakea founder Ryan Emmons decided to launch his bottled Hawaiian volcanic water in 2012 when he realized that the water he had been drinking during the summers and winters he spent in Hawaii with his family was something special.

“I discovered my family had access to one of the most naturally healthy, pure, and sustainable water sources in the world,” says Emmons.

The water is sourced from a single, pristine source just southwest of the town of Hilo on the Big Island of Hawaii. Filtered through thousands of feet of the Mauna Loa volcano, Waiakea water boasts a unique mineral composition and pH: rich in electrolytes like sodium, potassium, magnesium, and calcium, and boasting almost the ideal amount of silica, 30mg, lending a soft and silky mouthfeel to the water.

“Studies show that drinking 10 mg per day of silica in water can reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s by 11 percent,” Emmons says.

The water also boasts a pH ranging between 7.8 and 8.8, making it naturally alkaline; pure or purified water has a neutral pH of 7, and while artificially alkaline waters do exist, Emmons explains that in drinking these, the body thinks that it is receiving more alkaline minerals than are actually present in the artificially ionized water.

“Clinical studies have shown that artificially alkaline water can cause side effects and should generally be avoided as a daily drinking water,” he says.

Waiakea Water Boasts Sustainable Packaging

Waiakea water is a renewable, sustainable resource, sourced from an aquifer with a 1.4 billion gallon recharge rate and bottled at a facility that uses 33 percent renewable energy. This sustainable aspect of the water is also highlighted in the manner in which it is packaged.

Waiakea water sustainable packaging

Waiakea water is one of the first premium bottled waters and beverages in the world to be certified CarbonNeutral®. The packaging is made with high-grade, 100 percent recycled polyethylene terephthalate, which use 85 percent less energy to manufacture than regular or virgin plastic bottles. The manufacturing process also reduces carbon emissions by more than 90 percent as compared to traditional bottles; and the plastic is BPA-free.

Waiakea Water’s Partnership with Pump Aid

From the very beginning of Waiakea water, Emmon knew that he wanted to include a social element in his business model. “We realized no premium water or beverage was truly addressing the naturally functional, social, and environmental trends,” he says.

Waiakea Water has partnered with Pump Aid

U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Michael Lindsey/Released

Waiakea has partnered with Pump Aid, a charity dedicated to direct-to-community implementation of appropriate clean water supply, to donate 650 liters of clean water to disadvantaged communities in rural Africa. The charity has given access to clean, safe water and sanitation to over 1.35 million people to date, and have established more than 3,200 Elephant Pumps, a water pump designed by Pump Aid based on a 3,000-year-old Chinese design.

These efforts have led to more than 500 million liters of donated water to date.

Related on Organic Authority
The Traveler’s Bottled Water Dilemma
Dehydrated? Bottled Water Can’t Help You States a New Law
Tap vs. Bottled Water: Which is Safer?

Hawaiian waterfall image via Shutterstock

Emily Monaco
Emily Monaco

Emily Monaco is an American food and culture writer based in Paris. She loves uncovering the stories behind ingredients and exposing the face of our food system, so that consumers can make educated choices. Her work has been published in the Wall Street Journal, Vice Munchies, and Serious Eats.