Nongfu bottled water quality questioned

Updated: 2013-04-12 13:19

By Mao Jing (

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The quality storm of China’s bottled drinking water Nongfushanquan continues as Ma Jinya, secretary-general of the Committee of Healthy Drinking Water, National Health Association of China, told Beijing Times that the water standard of Nongfushanquan is worse than tap water.

On April 10, Nongfushanquan made a statement insisting that “the product quality is always higher than any existing national drinking water standard, and is far superior to the tap water standard,” and “Anyone who accuses our quality standard of being lower than tap water has severely damaged our reputation.”

However, Nongfushanquan’s product standard is Zhejiang’s standard DB33/383-2005, and Nongfushanquan was the only business representative involved in that standard-making process. A simple comparison showed that its standard limits on harmful substances such as arsenic and cadmium are less exact than the national standard, in which the arsenic limit is five times lower.

“Any bottled water should meet the bottom line of the national mandatory standard-GB5749 drinking water standards; if not, it would be in violation of national food safety law,” Ma said.

As for Nongfushanquan’s statement, Ma indicated that it is possible that the company implemented a lower standard while making the values of their detected product high.

“From an industrial point of view, local standard that is lower than the national standard cannot be recorded. Such an act in Zhejiang province is in fact a regression in law enforcement,” Ma said.

Beijing Times made several phone calls to the Quality Supervision Bureau and Health Department of Zhejiang on Thursday, but no one answered. An interview outline sent to Nongfushanquan also did not get a reply.

Ma said that in order to tackle the problem of varied standards in domestic drinking water, the National Health Association is now participating in a revision of specification for packaged drinking water. In the future, all packaged drinking water standards would be included in the national food safety standard system.