By: Jeremiah Moore–Contributor, The Drive Student Blog
“One perspective held by various NGOs—which I would call extreme—is that water should be declared a human right… The other view is that water is a grocery product. And just as every other product, it should have a market value.”
– Peter Brabeck-Letmathe, Nestlé’s Former Chief Executive Officer
For those who may not know, Nestlé’s bottled water is sold in every state in America. Although that fact is magnificent, the purpose of my post is not to congratulate this billion dollar corporation. Instead, I want to inform our readers about the tragic mischief behind the world’s largest bottled water company. For the sake of time – and typing – I am going to only delve into the Ice Mountain Bottled Water brand.
Simply put, Nestlé sucks its bottling locations dry, which includes Michigan. Yes, the same state where there is a water crisis in Flint, Michigan. However, Nestlé has publicly stated that it “has nothing to do” with the crisis. To help fight the problem, Nestlé, the billion dollar company, has partnered with three (3) other companies (Walmart, Pepsi, and Coca-Cola) to donate a whopping 35,000 bottles of water a month to the families affected by the water crisis.
So let’s do some math real quick (don’t pull out a calculator, I swear I got you on the adding, subtracting, and any carrying of a 1). Ice Mountain Bottled Water will give 35,000 bottles a month, which is 420,000 bottles of water a year. If we use the retail price tag of $0.89 that I just saw on Target’s website, the total cost is approximately $374,000 for the year. Now if Nestlé only has one billion dollars in the bank (it has a lot more), then it will have about $999,626,000 to re-invest! That amount of money insults my intelligence because the company owns many of the major brands that we consume, such as, Boost, Butterfinger, Coffee Mate, Cat Chow, DiGiorno, Dog Chow, Gerber, Häagen-Dazs, Jack’s Pizza, Kit-Kat, Lean Cuisine, Nesquick, Nescafé, Poland Spring, Purina, Smarties, Stouffer’s, Toll House, Tombstone, and Wonka Taffy to name a few. Nestlé has many other income streams from products that I did not list because I never personally use them. I am no Picasso, but you should see the picture I am trying to paint. The people over at Nestlé are more than wealthy – they are filthy rich and they are killing the less fortunate!
“Nestlé’s policies are an attack on the citizens of this country who can’t afford to fight for themselves against the inhumanities of greedy corporations.”
The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality approved the permit that allows Ice Mountain Bottling Water to increase from pumping 200 gallons of water per minute to 400 gallons per minute out of the natural wells in Michigan. The organization is quoted saying that “we can’t make our decisions based on popular opinion. We make our decision based on what the statute says we have to look at,” which means that although the amount of pumping is outrageous, it is not against the law. This excessive pumping is deemed to be acceptable because allegedly the amount of water taken from the wells/springs will not harm the environment due to the ability of the Great Lakes to naturally replenish. I don’t buy it!
This issue is not a black, white, purple, or blue person thing. It is a less fortunate person thing. I am sure that a number of people in Michigan have $800 to buy land there, which is the same price Nestlé paid for it. What the average Joe doesn’t have is the ability to debate and slither around laws, so they come up short in this area. Nestlé’s policies are an attack on the citizens of this country who can’t afford to fight for themselves against the inhumanities of greedy corporations. Today, Nestlé is going to be the poster child for all of those corporations. The injustice of cashing in on our natural resources is being mopped up due to the amount of money and power that this company has and the political sponsorship it can secure.
Although Nestlé is not breaking the law, I consider their actions inhumane. Many people in Michigan are going through a water crisis, but instead of allowing access to the source of natural water, Nestlé bottles it up and sells it to them. The investment of $2.37 the billion dollar company gives to the City of Evart, Michigan, per 1,000 gallons of water they pump, is a disgrace – but not against the law.
Also, Nestlé claims that its water is sourced and distributed for the Midwest by the Midwest from three (3) major water plants in Michigan: White Pine Springs, Evart Springs, and Sanctuary Springs. This claim is a lie (well just fine print), but you can find the full list on Ice Mountain’s website. The company also gets its water from Pennsylvania, Maine, Colorado, and Tennessee. I have no degree in mapology or geography, but Tennessee is a Southern state, Pennsylvania and Maine are Eastern states, and Colorado is a Western state – not Midwestern. So, not only are the individuals at Ice Mountain promoting false information, but they are getting away with – and getting paid for – turning the world into the Sahara Desert!
Further, the water is not even 100% pure! The U.S. Food & Drug Administration‘s new adjustments have changed the filtration laws a little. That is for another story though, but if you want to read more on this issue – feel free to click any of the links below. If you want to correct me on anything or have any concerns, leave a comment below or hit me up on social media.
For more information on Ice Mountain, Nestlé, and/or the water crisis in our world, check out:
Stay informed, open-minded, and driven.