Choice applauds crackdown on ‘organic’ water

Consumer watchdog, Choice, has announced its support of a recent crackdown on organic claims on water bottles.

The ACCC has directed seven companies to remove organic claims from their bottled water products, with an eighth supplier choosing to remove its brand from the market.

The affected brands include Active Organic, Lithgow Valley Springs Organic, Nature's Best Organic, Organic Australia, Organic Falls, Organic Nature's Best and Organic Springs.

The ACCC's finding followed negotiations with the manufacturers, who as a result, will avoid enforcement action.

The water brands must be amended because their organic claims are misleading and could be unjustly used to command a higher price at the checkout, the ACCC found.

The findings are based on the fact that water cannot be organic, as the term relates to agricultural farming ptactices, and water is not an agricultural product.

Choice spokesperson, Tom Godfrey, said "A word like organic is a trigger word to shoppers – it implies health benefits.

"This is a very popular term for food marketers. There are currently more than 300 products on the market trademarked as ‘organic’. It's time for manufacturers to stop relying on healthy-sounding words to boost product sales."

Last month Choice announced that bottled water is costing Australians 2000 times the price of conventional tap water – up to $3.88 for a litre of bottled water, compared to a fraction of a cent for the tap alternative.



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