Experts warn against 'deadly' raw water foodie trend

Bianca Soldani

Clean drinking water is something we often take for granted in Australia; every traveller who’s been to Bali can attest to how annoying it is to brush your teeth with the bottled stuff.

But a new trend is emerging in the US where consumers are actually shunning clean, filtered H2O in favour of something called “raw water”.

According to Business Insider, 9.5L bottles of unfiltered and un-sterilised spring water are flying off the shelves in Silicon Valley stores – even though the price has risen to a staggering AU$78 a pop.

Fans of the drink say it’s far more “refreshing” and “health conscious” than regular water, but medical practitioners strongly disagree.

Each year, 3.4 million people – most of whom are children – die from water-borne diseases, according to World Health Organisation data.

Untreated water can carry a myriad of dangerous diseases including cholera, hepatitis A, typhoid, dengue, malaria, scabies and ring worm, not to mention the risk of lead poisoning.

As food safety expert Bill Marler told Business Insider, “Almost everything conceivable that can make you sick can be found in water.”

So why are people drinking it? And paying such a high price for it?

A brand of raw spring water on sale in the US. Photo: Instagram

Some say it’s because people want to “get off the water grid” and are wary of the stuff that comes out of our taps because of the added fluoride.

Others blame it on a growing lack of trust in public health advice, similar to the anti-vaccination movement.

But we’re with this person; just seriously confused.

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