Thursday, March 11, 2010

Selling water.

I don't get it - bottled water. Folks are making fortunes selling water in bottles. Not oil, fine perfume, frankincense, or myrrh but water. And, in today's world the retail price is more per gallon than gasoline. And, we are not talking about special water with healing powers of Lourdes, or Warm Springs, Georgia (of FDR fame), or White Sulphur Springs, WV (of The Greenbrier fame). Often the water is no more special than that coming out of the taps of New York City.

But packaging is everything. It looks clean, clear, and unique coming from a bottle. Now in Europe they serve "sparkling" water which at least offers something extra - effervescence - bubbles (or gas as they call it). And, most Americans don't have a sophisticated palette for the gaseous water (although I happen to favor it.) I prefer Perrier, particularly with lime (OK it sounds "refined" but it tastes good.)

But back to bottled water. To me this falls into the "Why in the Hell didn't I think of this!" category. But who knew? While everyone was trying to develop something to sell to the American public to make millions, some genius just filled up plastic bottles with water, marketed it as "healthy" and voila - a phenomenon was born.

The irony is that these consumers that are so concerned about the environment are packing land fills with the empty bottles from their healthy water. If I want some water, it suits me just to get a clean glass from my cabinet, add ice cubes from the freezer, and fill it with cool tap water.

Now, if I can figure out how to bag and sell fresh air. Sounds crazy? Crazy as selling water?

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