In our quest for all things both "cool" and "eco", we stumbled across this product: boxed water.
As a designer, I must say I love the packaging. The simpler the better. I think of design and packaging as a way to communicate, not just a way to show off your fancy photoshop moves...
Anyway, we were instantly intrigued by the idea. Not only does the product avoid the use of plastic in it's packaging (a plus), the 90% recycled package design saves money and energy in less noticeable ways as well. For example, there's no wasted space on a palette or in a carton, due to the square shape. This means you can fit more units in a truck, so less truckloads are needed to keep the stores stocked.
Another benefit is that even if the water gets direct sunlight, the packaging has no harmful chemicals to be leached into the water, as with traditional plastic bottles. Finally, from a design production standpoint, they can print directly on the package without the need for a separate label to be printed and glued onto the bottle with hazardous adhesives.
In short, they seem to have hit upon a win-win situation in the world of packaged water. This author does not see any way in which they can fail as long as they stay true to their mission and keep up with the modern marketing techniques. They're only available in Michigan right now, but should be shipping nationwide soon.
Here is a link to their facebook group. Haven't seen them on Twitter yet, but we'll keep you posted...
One more thing: the water itself is simply carbon-filtered, purified water from a spring in Minnesota, and as they say on their site, "...it tastes like... water - simple and refreshing." Just like the packaging! And while we still recommend bringing your own water from home (see our review of the ThinkSport bottle), or looking for a drinking fountain, sometimes you just need to buy a container of water when you're out (or you live in Florida, the Land of Yellow Water). At least now there's a true eco-friendly alternative to the plastic bottles.
Here's what they have to say about themselves on their website:
"Part sustainable water company, part art project, part philanthropic project, and completely curious. 'Boxed Water is Better' is a boxed water company.
Starting with the simple idea of creating a new bottled water brand that is kinder to the environment and gives back a bit - we found that it shouldn't be bottled at all, but instead, boxed. So we looked to the past for inspiration in the century old beverage container and decided to keep things simple, sustainable, and beautiful. "
Ask about it at your local health food store or gourmet market today, and give them a link to the site "boxedwaterisbetter.com" or just send 'em here (jenandtommy.com).
Happy trails and happy drinking ;)
UPDATE: Boxed water was featured on GMA this past week (5-9-09), which is pretty impressive for a company that's only been on the market "8 or 9 weeks", as they say in their press release. Here is a link to the video snippet: Boxed Water on Good Morning America