Why is bottled water so much more expensive than tap water?

While complementary, bottled water and tap water respond to different needs and are therefore difficult to compare; indeed bottled water is part of the packaged beverage market and is distributed in a bottle, while tap water is provided on a wide-scale basis via pipes.

The price of bottled water, as that of all packaged beverages, reflects the investments necessary to ensure its convenience, safety and quality.

These investments include testing, bottling, storage and transport, all costs inherent to the packaged beverage business. In the case of Nestlé Waters, we also invest in water resource management and preservation; for example Nestlé Waters invests in technical assistance, amongst others, as part of the Agrivair resource protection programme around the Vittel and Contrex sources in France. Nestlé Waters in Switzerland has also fostered local partnerships around the Henniez source to help preserve natural resources and maintain farmer income in this region of Switzerland.

Bottled water is not a substitute for, nor does it compete with tap water as the major source of drinking water for any population. Bottled water provides consumers with a healthy, convenient packaged beverage option, which consumers choose to buy for taste, health, quality and/or convenience and portability reasons.