Money down the drain

June 25, 2010, 5:56 PM GMT+0

A new YouGov SixthSense report has shown that 60% of UK adults view bottled water as money down the drain, with almost three quarters of respondents (71%) agreeing that tap water is as clean as bottled water. The findings seem to back up the thoughts of TellYouGov users, or ‘tyggers’, one of whom posted that bottled water doesn’t actually ‘taste as fresh as tap’.

It would seem that the perceived negative ecological effects and potential health risks associated with mineral water are, along with the recession, some of the major influences on consumer behaviour. The SixthSense findings come in the wake of a recent report claiming that 70% of bottled water found in shops contains high levels of bacteria.

The report suggests that the fall in mineral water market value of ten percent may be attributable to some or all of the above factors. James McCoy, Research Director for YouGov SixthSense, believes that although ‘the mineral water market has experienced exponential growth over the past ten years, [there are] signs that this may be coming to an end. Renewed faith in tap-water may also have been brought about by the recession, innovations in home filtering and the popularity of Britta-style products.’

58% typically drink tap water in an average day, with just over a quarter of respondents opting for bottled water. Many people, including some tyggers, seem to see bottled water as ‘pointless’. Others go so far as to say that bottled water is overpriced, or even ‘a scam’.

Perhaps unexpectedly, more affluent respondents indicated that they were more likely to drink tap water (62%), as opposed to their less well off counterparts (53%).

65% of UK adults are currently trying to increase their water consumption, suggesting that people are receptive to the widely publicised health benefits of drinking water. However, the same report also indicates that, despite their efforts, one in three UK adults fail to drink any water in an average day.

YouGov Drinks Market Report

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