March 2018 BusinessDaily;
Soft drinks company Coca-Cola has launched its own study to ascertain the presence of micro-plastics in Dasani bottled water following a report published on Thursday indicating that the product is among world famous brands contaminated by tiny pieces of plastic.
Coca-Cola in a statement said it has “not verified the findings” and stated that it has some of the most stringent quality standards in the industry.
The study, which tested 259 bottles sold by 11 brands purchased in 19 locations in nine different countries, said that concentration of microplastics in Dasani water sourced in Kenya topped 335 plastic pieces for every litre. Samples of Dasani water bought from Amazon had a minimum and maximum concentration of 85 and 303 plastic pieces per litre, respectively.
“We stand by the safety of our products, and welcome continued study of plastics in our environment,” Coca-Cola said in a statement.
“However, as a precautionary measure we have constituted a project team that will carry out a similar study, with a view to ascertaining if the findings in the study are valid. This independent study will inform our subsequent course of action,” said Coca-Cola.
The presence of plastics does not however indicate that the water is harmful to health, since studies on their effects to the human body are yet to be conducted.
The survey by scientists based at the State University of New York, and commissioned by a non-profit media organisation Orb, analysed bottled water sourced from Kenya, Indonesia, India, the US, Lebanon, Thailand, China, Mexico, Brazil and e-commerce platform Amazon.
Samples from Nestle Pure Life brand sourced from the US had the highest concentration at 10,390 plastic pieces a litre. The study revealed that contamination was partially coming from the packaging or the bottling process.
The latest survey follows a tap water study released in September last year showing the level of plastic pieces concentration.
“We found roughly twice as many plastic particles within bottled water as compared to tap water on average,” the study said.
UK medical journal Lancet in an article published in October 2017 on Microplastics and Human Health says that while no one has come out to quantify the effects of microplastics on human beings, urgent measures are needed to reduce its use and understand the effects of these particles on both ecosystems and the human body.