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California’s new “Raw Water” fad could be fatal

California’s new “Raw Water” fad could be fatal

“Almost everything conceivable that can make you sick can be found in water.”

Have you ever wondered why bottled water became so popular?

Prior to 1989, only posh brands such as Evian were available. Then in 1989, a polymer called polyethylene terephthalate (PET) made the packaging lightweight, durable and inexpensive. Thus a craze was born.

Now, some Californians are tying to pump-up a fun, new water-based fad: Raw Water!

At Rainbow Grocery, a cooperative in this city’s Mission District, one brand of water is so popular that it’s often out of stock. But one recent evening, there was a glittering rack of it: glass orbs containing 2.5 gallons of what is billed as “raw water” — unfiltered, untreated, unsterilized spring water, $36.99 each and $14.99 per refill, bottled and marketed by a small company called Live Water.

“It has a vaguely mild sweetness, a nice smooth mouth feel, nothing that overwhelms the flavor profile,” said Kevin Freeman, a shift manager at the store. “Bottled water’s controversial. We’ve curtailed our water selection. But this is totally outside that whole realm.”
Here on the West Coast and in other pockets around the country, many people are looking to get off the water grid.

I highlighted the words in The New York Times article because I was stunned at the potential health issues that could arise from drinking water that could contain deadly bacteria, parasites, and heavy metals.

It seems that after living in the Golden Age of Antibiotics, some people have forgotten how lethal waterborne diseases could be.

Food-safety expert and lawyer Bill Marler reviewed the hazards of untreated, unsterilized water in a Business Insider interview:

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

Unfiltered, untreated water, even from the cleanest streams, can contain animal feces, spreading Giardia, which has symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea and results in roughly 4,600 hospitalizations a year. Hepatitis A, which resulted in 20 deaths in a California outbreak in 2017, can be spread through water if it isn’t treated. E. coli, and cholera can also be transmitted via untreated water.

Because filtered, treated water has become the norm, Marler says, most people don’t realize how dangerous so-called raw water can be.

“The diseases that killed our great-grandparents were completely forgotten about,” he said.

Other diseases and potentially lethal pathogens that are spread by contaminated water include:

  • Travellers’ Diarrhea
  • Cryptosporidium
  • Dysentery
  • Salmonella
  • Typhoid Fever
  • Hepatitis E
  • Campylobacter

My brother caught dysentery during a tour of duty during Desert Storm.  He says it was the fastest 50 pounds he ever lost.

Fortunately, he survived. Dysentery takes the life of 50,000 people annually.

Young children are especially susceptible to diarrhoeal diseases, which claim the lives of over 500,000 boys and girls under the age of 5 annually.

Finally, untreated water can also contain chemical contaminants, which is why there are regulatory limits on their presence in the public water system. The “Raw Water” promoters may want to talk to some of Michigan’s former public works officials about the consequences of dealing with chemically unsafe water.

Here’s to hoping that “Raw Water” craze is flushed away before someone becomes seriously ill.


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DDsModernLife | January 4, 2018 at 5:05 pm

I once heard a quote attributed to Benjamin Franklin:

“In beer, there is freedom,
“In wine, there is celebration.

“In water, there is bacteria.”

    4th armored div in reply to DDsModernLife. | January 4, 2018 at 5:44 pm

    “In wine there is wisdom, in beer there is Freedom, in water there is bacteria.”

    ― Benjamin Franklin

      DDsModernLife in reply to 4th armored div. | January 4, 2018 at 10:12 pm

      Thank you for lending accuracy to my vague memory!

      I thought DDsModernLife must have been joking, but it seems you’re both so stupid that you actually think Franklin could possibly have said this. Come on, how can you make fun of Democrats when you show the same level of ignorance they do?

    Cleetus in reply to DDsModernLife. | January 5, 2018 at 3:53 am

    Carpe diem – Seize the day

    Carpe cerevisiae – Seize the beer

    OnTheLeftCoast in reply to DDsModernLife. | January 5, 2018 at 12:37 pm

    Franklin died nearly fifty years before the first recorded use of the word “bacterium.”

    While Leeuwenhoek first observed bacteria in 1676, the word bacterium was introduced in 1828, almost thirty years after Franklin’s death. Franklin was undoubtedly familiar with ‘Infusoria’ which bacteria were called during Franklin’s lifetime, so Franklin’s ditty would have been:

    In beer, there is freedom,
    In wine, there is celebration,
    In water, there is infusoria.”

    Undoubtedly, some modern translator took it upon himself to translate Infusoria into the modern and more accurate word, bacteria.

      Milhouse in reply to MSO. | January 5, 2018 at 1:14 pm

      That is BS. Infusoria and bacteria are different things, and neither of them were known in Franklin’s day. Leeuwenhoek’s animalcules were not reported by anyone else, and were just a curiosity.

      Not only would Franklin never have been so ignorant as to use the singular “is” for a plural subject, whether “bacteria” or “infusoria”, it’s completely obvious that he could not possibly have written that line, using “infusoria”, “bacteria”, or any other equivalent. No 18th or even 19th century person could have written it.

      The first two lines may very well be his. But the third line isn’t and can’t be. It’s obviously a 20th century work, and anyone who can’t instantly see that is a dolt.

        I got straight off the Gorilla Channel.

        alaskabob in reply to Milhouse. | January 5, 2018 at 3:48 pm

        The final links to germ theory didn’t show up until the late 1800’s. Before then we had “laudable pus”.

        I suggest several selections of African and Middle East sourced waters for that naturally refreshing moment. Some South American type would be good also. Since the Left loves all things 3rd World why not let them catch “3rd World Fever” directly rather than from illegal immigrants?

considering the segment of the #Failifornia population that is drinking it, the danger strikes me as being a feature, not a bug.

“Drink Up!”, i say… 😎

4th armored div | January 4, 2018 at 5:48 pm

is there no public safety law that this is in violation of ?

what consequences do the bottler and sales outlet have to suits?

    If someone is dumb enough to drink “raw” water, they deserve the consequences (children excluded). The role of government ins’t to protect stupid people from themselves.

notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital | January 4, 2018 at 5:50 pm

Leslie, please!!!!



I got incredibly sick once after scuba diving near the bottom of a lake and passing through an area that smelled like raw sewage. Yes, the smell was so bad, both I and the guy I was diving with could smell it while underwater. When I was talking with a group of folks I knew about being that sick a couple of years later, the doctor in the group asked me if I had ever had amoebic dysentery. I said that I did not think so, his response, “let me ask the question in a different way …”

The other guy was bedridden for a week and had larengitis for three weeks.

Yes indeed, the epidemiological Big Three—cholera, dysentery, and typhus—are spread via drinking water. Actually, water which has been, errr, let’s just say “organically enhanced.” (Just enough to give it a little flavor. Really. Honest injun.)

This is not exactly arcane or rarefied knowledge. You’d think that even the Californian “man in the street” would know it.

This is a contest in which marketing geniuses compete to see who can best sell a product that has a value well under $0., isn’t it?

Then again, human poop sells for $635./dose when it’s used to cure a C. Diff. infection. Presumably there’s some care in selecting the poop to minimize risk, but now that the door (so to speak) has been opened, surely bottled poop will shortly be promoted as a wellness supplement at your local GNC?

    redc1c4 in reply to Albigensian. | January 4, 2018 at 8:01 pm

    since C.diff can kill you, and there is actual science behind the medical treatment, it is NOT the same thing as “raw water”, which could give you C.diff, or kill you a dozen or so other ways.

    Somewhere someone’s hoping to make a killing advocating “poop enemas” 🙂

Spring water ≠ stream water.


    daniel_ream in reply to Andrew Branca. | January 4, 2018 at 6:41 pm

    While that’s true, gibberish of this magnitude:

    The Extensive Water Analysis shows super high levels of natural silica. Silica is essentially pure liquid crystals. Silicone holds information and energy in a unique way, thats why all our devices run off of them, hence the name silicone valley. Imagine how it would feel to upgrade your brain’s entire operating system to the best computer chips available. Silica is also known as the beauty mineral, very rarely found in any food or supplements.

    …does not fill me with confidence that these people know what they’re doing.

      Well, sure, like virtually all Progressives they’re vastly over-credentialed and self-satisfied, and vastly under-informed in any useful way. I expect vast numbers of them will end up with giardia, because they’re actually drinking the highly diluted fecal matter that is stream water, rather than spring water drawn at the source.

      And I respect their autonomy to do so. 🙂


        redc1c4 in reply to Andrew Branca. | January 4, 2018 at 7:59 pm

        point of order: spring water can become just as contaminated as any other water source, even with precautions taken to prevent such things.

        unless it is either constantly monitored and/or treated, there’s still a risk of spreading disease & parasites.

        from all appearances, they just put this stuff into a bottle and sell it to fools.

          Anything “can” happen.

          If you’re drawing a comparable between spring water at the source and stream water from which animals have been drinking and into which they’ve been defecating, you’ve lost all credibility on this issue with me.


          redc1c4 in reply to redc1c4. | January 4, 2018 at 8:52 pm

          not sure why i’d lose any credibility for stating the obvious truth.

          off the top of my head, spring water can be contaminated at the source in several ways:

          the aquifer it comes from can become contaminated, naturally or artificially.

          the pathway to the surface can become contaminated as well, leaving the formerly pure water impure.

          the source can become contaminated at the surface.

          the water can become contaminated during the process of collecting and transporting it to consumers.

          and all this is based upon my Army field sanitation team training, which, among other things spent a great deal of time on the locating & safeguarding water sources and testing/treating water for consumption by mess halls and for drinking.

          so, even though i am a native #Failifornian, i believe i have sufficient training & experience to comment on this issue, viz a viz possible contamination of H2O

          yes, streams are more problematic than springs, and the deeper the aquifer of a spring, the safer it is, but, as Ronnie did, i’m a firm believer in “Trust, but verify.”


          Barry in reply to redc1c4. | January 4, 2018 at 9:20 pm

          Quite a bit of what is billed as spring water has been filtered…

          Through bat shit.

Didn’t Sal Monella play shortstop for Cub’s back in ’67?

“Here’s to hoping that “Raw Water” craze is flushed away before someone becomes seriously ill.”

You know it will need to kill more than a few people before anything is done about it – especially in California.


Drink up, kalifornia. Hell, we’ll even buy a round!

notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital | January 4, 2018 at 7:37 pm

More good reading on this subject.

“There Are Very Stupid People in California with Too Much Money

“Our genius (Party of Science) social betters are paying $100+ per gallon to drink dirty unfiltered water….

The California “progressives” are just genius’s.

Marketing toilet water…

More than $5/gallon for untreated probably disease ridden water? I almost applaud the purveyors of this for their seeing a market for this. Then there’s this: “Bottled water’s controversial”. Oh, in what way?

Morning Sunshine | January 4, 2018 at 9:46 pm

I drink “raw” water. My well is 380′ feet deep, and it is the best water ever. 🙂

Folks, these are the same clowns Penn and Teller took to the cleaners years ago:

“Raw Water!” Now with 10% more Deer Urine and 7% more fecal matter! Get yours today!

*% of fecal matter and urine may vary.

DDsModernLife | January 4, 2018 at 10:57 pm

The sad thing is: the people drinking “raw water” are probably well educated in their respective fields but they’ve never read history. They’ve never read how large collections of people – particularly 18th and 19th century armies – were consistently stricken by dysentery and cholera because of poor sanitation.

And now these wackos willingly turn away from the barrier to disease that modern society offers?

I don’t get it.

LoneStarWhacko | January 4, 2018 at 11:01 pm

Well, this is a real life Darwinian sorting device.

This thread cracks me up. My wife and I have a water well and have been drinking “raw water” right out of the ground for twenty years. Our kids (who live in the city) take bottles of it back home because it doesn’t have that chlorine taste or smell. Many people in my area get their drinking water from “spring houses” where the water seeps right out of the ground. (The “house” just keeps animals from mucking around in the spring.) Other neighbors collect rain water off their roofs and store it in cisterns for household use.

    elliesmom in reply to snopercod. | January 5, 2018 at 8:33 am

    There are millions of us who drink “raw water” from our own private wells. It’s wonderful. Deliciously cold right out of the tap. Another one of the advantages of not living in rat cages in the city. Apparently, we’re all sitting on gold mines. 🙂

    EdReynolds in reply to snopercod. | January 5, 2018 at 8:38 am

    I grew up on spring water. My parents still get their water from the spring. It tastes great and no one has ever gotten sick from it.

    Mac45 in reply to snopercod. | January 5, 2018 at 1:44 pm

    It is entirely possible to drink fresh water from a spring or well, untreated, and suffer no ill effects. However, if you, or your neighbors are using septic tanks, or are in an area where there may be mineral contamination, you might end up with significant health issues. Well water has to be monitored regularly for bacterial and chemical contamination. Otherwise you have no idea what you are drinking. That is why people in developed areas, who rely upon untreated well water for household uses, usually buy treated water to drink and cook with.

I don’t understand the difference between ordinary “spring water” sold in stores at much lower prices and this “raw” water. These people are buying something not worth the price.

California, Hmmm…!
There is always a silver lining to every cloud.

Let ’em drink it–Evolution in action.

It’ll be a heck of a weight loss program when they ship out the bottle with Giardia.

Seconding redc1c4, in every detail. Each of these modes of contamination is known to be occurring in the region where I live.

OleDirtyBarrister | January 5, 2018 at 11:49 am

“California’s new “Raw Water” fad could be fatal”

Let’s hope that it catches on in a big, big way in California among the unwashed liberal atheist moonbats.

I want to cash in on the demise of my enemies by selling some spring water and well water as “raw water,” as if that sort of water has not been available and consumed before now.

Hey, we in Florida willl be glad to ship them all the Lake Okeechobee water that they could want. It is about as raw as water gets.

buckeyeminuteman | January 6, 2018 at 7:30 am

$36.99 for a gallon on untreated water? I can get that in my backyard or off my roof for free. Oh wait, collecting rainwater is illegal in California.