Plastic microfibres found in most bottled waters

Microscopic plastic particles fluoresce under a blue crime light and are seen through an orange filter. Orb Media and researchers at the State University of New York in Fredonia performed exclusive tests on more than 259 bottles of drinking water from Eur

Concerning findings from the State University of NY at Fredonia may make us rethink using a plastic water bottle.

The WHO initiative is partly in response to a study that screened more than 250 bottles of water from 11 different brands bought in nine countries - the largest investigation of its kind.

"Plastic was identified in 93 of the samples". Many types only continue to break down into smaller and smaller particles, until they are not visible to the naked eye.

"They have been reported in tap water, beer and many other foods, but I think that people will be surprised that nearly all bottled water appears to be contaminated too".

"Under certain wavelengths of light it causes them to sparkles likes stars in the night sky", Sherri Mason of the State University of NY said.

The WHO told BBC News it wants to determine if micro-plastics can undermine human health.

The brands tested included Evian, Dasani, Aquafina, Nestle Pure Life, Gerolsteiner, Minalba, San Pellegrino, Wahaha, Epura and Bisleri. The bottles analysed were taken from countries like India, US, China, Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Lebanon, Kenya, and Thailand, reported The Guardian.

The WHO is set to assess this latest research and launch a review into the potential risks of plastic in drinking water.

Previous studies have established how the dye sticks to free-floating pieces of plastic and makes them fluoresce under certain wavelengths of light.

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Using an infrared microscope, the researchers found that, for particles around 0.1 millimeters in size, there's roughly 10.4 per liter (2.3 gallons) of bottled water in various major brands.

Mason said there is plastic pollution in all components of our environment, including the air, bodies of water, fish and sediment.

Bottled water is not alone. Few studies, however, have looked at how much of that plastic was winding up in the filtered water people drink.

I suggested to Michael Walker, a consultant to the Office of the UK Government Chemist and founder board member of the Food Standards Agency, that the jury was out on whether microplastics could cause harm.

Researchers used fluorescent tagging with Nile Red dye to study the microplastic contamination.

Recent studies have found microplastics even in some of the most remote parts of the ocean.

Danone, the company behind Evian and Indonesian brand Aqua, told Orb it is "not in a position to comment as the testing methodology used is unclear".

The American Beverage Association, which represents numerous biggest brands across North America, including Nestle, Evian, Dasani and Aquafina, told Orb that "the science on microplastics and microfibres is nascent and an emerging field...."

International Bottled Water Association President and CEO Joe Doass said in a statement that the report's findings "do nothing more than unnecessarily scare consumers", and added that "The bottled water industry is committed to providing consumers with the safest and highest quality products", reported USA Today.

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