Poland Swill

Time from opening a fresh bottle of Poland Springs Water to it becoming a foul tub of ichorous, stagnant scum? Two days, according to reader Max.

Although Max’s taste buds seem more superhumanly developed than our own (he claims to be able to taste whether or not a less-than-fresh dish towel has been used to wipe out a glass; I, on the other hand, have been known to use old pairs of underpants to dry dishes), it wasn’t really the taste of the Poland Spring Water going bad that he noticed, although his roommates complained.

Rather, it was the stench of it. “I’m talking jock-strap/arm pit bacteria party where everyone was invited. Pouring out the rest of the bottle was like pouring out stale milk and I nearly gagged as the gurgling cess-pool flowed down the drain,” Max writes. In a couple of days, an open bottle of what Poland Springs would have you believe is some of the purest water on earth turned into primordial ooze.

Max’s email, after the jump.

I’m a college student in New York City and last year, my roommates and I decided it was in our best interest to arrange for a water delivery service.

We left it up to the third mate, who decided that poland spring was the most cost effective solution. We all pitched in and in a few dyas, our water cooler was delivered. Despite being the wrong color (we had paid extra for the stainless steel model and recieved the black plastic model instead), and never actually yielding hot water from the hot water spout, everything seemed to be going fine. After a few weeks of fine-tuning the number of bottles we needed between the three of us, it became a regular part of our daily grind, and the only times we thought anything of the system was once every month when we would drag the empty bottles downstairs to be exchanged.

Both of my roommates had at times expressed concern that the water was not tasting fresh. Being perpetually stuffed up myself, I could not taste anything off and felt they were just being paranoid. And I figured, the bottles being plastic and the cooler nearly new, it may have just been a slight “new car smell” that was somehow acceptable in a new water cooler. Anyways, we all seemed to get used to it and we had the service all of last year.

THis past summer, the roommate who orchestrated the transation with Poland Spring decided to move elsewhere. He took the cooloer with him, and as such we recieved 6 five gallon bottles two weeks ago and have no good way to use them. We opened a bottle and carefully poured directly into our glasses as this was our only source of clean water. It worked fine, but one day I noticed that the water in my glass was tasting a bit off. I poured out the glass and rinsed it, assuming that we had used a less-than-fresh dish towel when we last dried the dishes. I refilled it. Still very off-taste; sort of like a pond scum smell.

This suggested that I smell the inside of the poland spring bottle. Wowee did that stink. Taking a whiff inside the neck of the bottle was like smelling a locker room fresh after the football team scrubbed their feet in the showers. I’m talking jock-strap/arm pit bacteria party where everyone was invited. Pouring out the rest of the bottle was like pouring out stale milk and I nearly gagged as the gurgling cess-pool flowed down the drain. It’s now a few days later and already the second bottle has gone bad. This water is being stored with the caps on the bottle when not being used, and the bottles are not being exposed to any kind of direct sunlight. OS then, why is this water rotting? I think Poland Spring has some quality control issues.

We have since cancelled our contract with Poland Spring and have bought a Pur Water filter to attatch to our sink, which hopefully will yield cleaner, tastier water, is cheaper, and will be a more fluid (forgive the oun) solution (hahahaha I crack myself up) to our liquid issues. (that sound wrong) What’s in your water?


Edit Your Comment

  1. Yep says:

    Not for nothing, but NYC has some of the finest drinking water in the country. Why buy?

  2. Falconfire says:

    Thats the rub I think, almost everyone thinks bottled water is good for you, or even different, but the fact is tap water is typically better for you for a number of reasons.

    People buy though because ad agents did such a great job selling people on the health benifits of bottle water in the 80’s that they barely advertize it today.

  3. JLam says:

    Are you sure the bottle didn’t somehow become contaminated after you opened it? An apartment with a couple of college guys living in it isn’t exactly an industrial grade clean room, and a bottle of water is pretty much Club Med for any sort of bacteria that would get in there.

    I seriously doubt the water supplier had anything to do with this.

  4. viriiman says:

    Watch the Penn & Teller Bullshit show on Bottled Water

  5. Word on the street is, there is a major increase in cavities in children, because they are drinking bottled water, which typically doesn’t have flouride added to it.

    Cavities and bottled water

  6. Yikes.

    Here’s more info:

    ‘The lawsuit charges that many of the features Nestle calls springs are really manmade excavations, created by backhoes that dug down until they reached the water table.

    If you want to put a label on the bottle that says ‘spring water,’ federal regulations specifically require — among other things — that ‘there shall be a natural force causing the water to flow to the surface through a natural orifice.’

    The springs associated by Nestle with some of its Maine wells are not the idyllic pools that come to mind when the company talks about ‘pristine sources’ and ‘earth’s most precious resources.’

    Some of them are downright unsightly, stagnant puddles surrounded by boggy ground in areas rife with mosquitoes and deer flies. And as the lawsuit states, some of them are adjacent to parking lots.’


  7. Also recommending Penn and Teller ep, and confirming childing drinking bottled water equaling more cavities. Dental practices are seeing kids coming in with exponentially more cavities now that they’re not drinking tap.

  8. GenXCub says:

    If this were Vegas, I’d be sympathetic. You do not DARE drink tap water here (without a big home filtration system). In both places that I’ve lived in, you could practically taste the stalagmites of calcium and other metallic/minerally tastes.

  9. LassLisa says:

    Flouride in tap water may be good for your teeth but there’s evidence it’s pretty bad for the rest of your body (especially in children). There’s a reason why toothpaste has warning labels on it. Bottled water (especially ‘spring’ water) might not be any better, but I’m sure I’d rather filter my water than drink it straight from the tap.

    Also I’ve definitely left bottles (the small kind) of Poland Spring sitting around my room for nearly a week, and not noticed any smell.

  10. homerjay says:

    My town does not flouridate our water. I’ve lived here all my life and I haven’t got a single one. Scientific? no. Anecdotal? Sure.

    Brush your teeth and floss and you won’t have cavaties.

    I’ll bet (like the lunchables thing) that the increase in cavities in kids has more to do with shittier foods combined with parents laziness about getting their kids to brush.

  11. Falconfire says:

    Flouride in low dosages is not bad. The people who show evidence that it is also dont let you know they are talking about 300 times the amount you get from drinking water in your lifetime.

    In those amounts everythings bad for you, including the water it’s self.

  12. homerjay says:

    What makes the amount of flouride in toothpaste insufficient?

  13. Falconfire says:

    Because its not flouride. Its sodium flouride which IS dangerous in large amounts.

    What they put in water is flouride.