“Is [Nestlé’s] Poland Spring the same as your sink water? No. It’s worse. One or more of the company’s wells are near present or former human waste dump, landfill, or similar site.”
POLAND SPRING, MAINE — Nestlé is facing a class-action lawsuit from consumers in eight states in New England, based on claims that the Poland Spring brand is “100% Natural Spring Water.” The plaintiffs, from Maine to Pennsylvania, are alleging deceptive labeling.
A classic example is labeling something “all natural.” That label really means that all of the ingredients occur in nature, but it doesn’t guarantee a healthier product. There are plenty of unhealthy things in nature, like tobacco. However, the label “all natural” implies a healthier product because many other products are pumped full of chemicals. What Nestlé does is more egregious. They put “Poland Spring” on their water. Consumers often make the reasonable assumption the water comes from the Poland Spring in Maine that is the implied source. They then think it’s fresh spring water when in reality it’s groundwater.
Water goes well with chocolate. But, speaking specifically of the Nestlé company and its shoddy products, a better phrase would be: Nestlé water is tolerable when paired with Nestlé chocolate.
It turns out Poland Spring is not from natural springs. Nor from any springs. Nor from the Poland Spring of Maine. Nor from Poland Poland.”
Drawing from an expose in the New York Times, she continues taking bites out of Nestlé:
Not one drop of Poland Spring water actually qualifies as spring water, a class-action lawsuit says.”
Now that Karavani has you thirsty, it’s time for some dry wit:
That was more shocking to me than learning that Gerber Baby Food was now actually made by this baby [the camera zooms in on the iconic Gerber baby logo]. That’s why I stopped eating it at the age of 13. Not because i could chew. Chewing is for street people.”
100% natural what?
Karavani then plays an ad for Poland Spring in which an anthropomorphized bottle of Poland Spring makes some bold assertions. The bottle of water is also female, which makes sense. Candy and Soda get male voices and Water gets a female voice. Sugar and spice may be having a gender crisis but Poland Spring seems to be a headstrong foodstuff that won’t take any guff from any male food items. From the ad:
I don’t come from a tap. I come from springs. I am born natural [sic]. I am Poland Spring and I’m 100 percent natural.”
So there are several lies here but one thing that almost has to be true is that the water is 100 percent natural. It may be common practice to water liquor and other drinks down, but it would be more of a challenge to water water down with synthetics. It’s probably best not to put anything past companies these days though.
Karavani takes this time to give the voice of the water a squirt in the eye:
On the one hand, that is authentic, because if water could talk she would sound like a phone sex operator gasping for air. But in the words of the plaintiffs she’s actually ‘a colossal fraud perpetrated against American consumers.’ One hundred percent fraud [at this point Karavani is mocking the voice of the liquid huckster].”
Karavani then aims her water cannon at Nestlé:
In Nestlé ’s defense, if you knew what was in the bottle…they…would make less money. The brand’s sales are between $300 and $900 million annually.”
Then she gets pretty frothy:
What is in each bottle? Is it the Nestlé CEO’s piss? Close. It’s actually common groundwater marketed illegally, to reap massive undue sales.”
After a brief parody promoting groundwater, Karavani explains what happened to the fabled Poland Spring:
The famous Poland Spring in Maine effectively ran dry nearly 50 years ago.”
After a nice sexual double entendre about the dryness of the spring, Karavani dives back into the facts, at least Nestlé ’s version of them:
Spokespeople from Nestlé say that the FDA, State and Federal officials already approved the sale of the water as spring water. The lawsuit claims that ‘the company built and maintained six man-made springs to comply with the law.’”
Worse than tap
Karavani then asks an important question about water quality:
Is Poland Spring the same as your sink water? No. It’s worse. One or more of the company’s wells are near present or former human waste dump, landfill, or similar site…
What’s more disturbing is that Nestlé has 49 brands of bottled water in 34 different countries. Nestlé has been accused in the past of going to weak regions and buying up water sources for next to nothing.”
The show cuts to a clip of CBS News, which reported that Nestlé went to southern California to get its sweet, sweet dihydrogen monoxide despite the area being under drought conditions
And, just when you thought it couldn’t get worse, Karavani has more revelations:
In Michigan, many blame Nestlé for being partially responsible for the Flint crisis, where water is undrinkable. Nestlé pumps 130 billion gallons of water nearby, but they do pay the state of Michigan $200 a year for that water.”
A line delivered with perfect deadpan sarcasm.
Also apparently the state of Michigan confused Nestlé’s water bill with that of “dry jimmy,” the driest person in Michigan and the rest of Michigan is footing the bill for Nestlé’s water consumption. That was supposed to be a joke but it rings very true.
Water as a corporate right
Karavani then explains that the Austrian CEO of Nestlé doesn’t believe water should be a human right.
What is it with these Austrians? First, there’s Hitler, then the Nestlé CEO and the rest I assume are good people.
Back again comes Muckraker Karavani explaining Nestlé’s human-rights abuses:
There’s a cost to everything, even the slave labor Nestlé faces lawsuits for using to source its cocoa. The company said slavery reporting could cost consumers. Breaking news, not using slave labor could cost more money, for you, not for Nestlé.”
Well, it did just say slavery reporting, not necessarily that Nestlé would stop using slaves, just that they would have to them.
It would be interesting to see the look on the person’s face who’s interviewing for the position of “accounting services for dependent contractors” when he or she learns that all they’re going to do is count slaves all day.
Then they’ll have to look out for that class-clown slave who is always trying to get counted as many times as possible to drive our prices up. Who does he think he is, some sort of person?
Watch | RT’s Redacted Tonight with Naomi Karavani: Nestle’s Water Not What They Say
Feature photo | Redacted Tonight reporter Naomi Karavani delivers a “Crunch” to the Nestlé. Screenshot | YouTube
Nick Rehwaldt is a MintPress News intern. He is an author, artist, and standup comedian focused on political issues, with much of his material ripped from the headlines on any given week. He’s also a proud non-voter and global citizen who happens to live in the U.S.
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect MintPress News editorial policy.