Evian Water Rejected By China For Containing "Excessive Amounts Of Bacteria"

118 tons of Evian mineral water has been seized and impounded by Chinese Health Inspectors because it contained “excessive amounts of bacteria.” China has a different standard for bacteria than the one set by the World Health Organization and Evian does not make the cut.

Evian now joins KFC, Proctor and Gamble and Walmart on the list of foreign companies that have recently had products banned from China for health concerns. —MEGHANN MARCO

China seizes 118 tons of Evian water [International Herald Tribune]
(Photo: Beige Alert)


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  1. anatak says:


    They’re shipping us dog crap labeled as food (or food labeled as dog crap, not sure which) and suddenly they’ve got high health standards?

  2. Doc Benway says:

    can you say Pot meet Kettle

  3. bluemeep says:

    Soooo…was this a serious rejection or is it just the “Oh yeah?!” retalitory statement that it appears to be by playing connect the dots with recent news stories?

  4. shoegazer says:

    No, they’re using obscure health standards to bludgeon western multinationals who are trying to enter a market just as protectionist as the USA. I guess if America can deny Dubai its ports for “national security” reasons, I can’t really fault China for creatively applying the rules. What goes around…

  5. eldergias says:

    Wow, Evian must be absurdly nasty for CHINA to reject it.

  6. shoegazer says:

    And BTW if the reference is too obscure / old, this is what I’m talking about. Viva le free trade!

  7. scoobydoo says:

    @ytsirklin: Why? Evian isn’t an American company. It’s owned by Danone, and it is French water.

  8. dbeahn says:


  9. Wally East says:

    This is just weird all around. Evian ships to China? Why not just bottle water in China and brand it as Evian China or something? Also, Evian isn’t shipping water full of bacteria to other countries? China has better standards than WHO on bacteria? (That’s a crappy piece of reporting in the original article. Tell us what both standards are.) The water arrived in China in February. That’s a three-month backlog. Just a weird story all around.

  10. Juliekins says:

    Mmmmm, Evian. It’s irony flavored!

    I don’t actually care for Evian, but the idea of China rejecting another nation’s foodstuffs because they might be “dangerous” is laughable to me. I seriously doubt there are that many quality control problems with Evian.

  11. scoobydoo says:

    @rnkoneil: Mainly because the French Alps don’t reach all the way to China…

    Evian is not your average US tapwater in an overpriced bottle.

  12. emjsea says:

    China will continue to do anything and everything to keep the amount of goods going into the country down to a trickle (water pun intended) and the amount of goods to a roaring flood. And we’ll continue to roll over and be their submissive bitches while we take out our abused spouse syndrome on little old Cuba.

  13. foghat81 says:

    @ytsirklin: that pretty much sums it all up, doesn’t it?!

  14. Libelous1 says:

    I think this Evian water was intended only for brushing teeth with Chinese toothpaste.

  15. nucleotide says:

    Hilarious! China’s the place where you have to do a smell test on every bottle you open to make sure it’s not sewage. I’ve gotten food(water) poising from a bad bottle of water at the Crowne Plaza Beijing.

  16. esqdork says:

    Evian has never given me stomach problems. The crap that is passed off as bottled water in China, however, has incapacitated me in the past.

  17. catnapped says:

    @ytsirklin: HEH–no kidding!

  18. Doc Benway says:

    @scoobydoo: I was referring to the fake protein chinese companies sold US Dog Food Manufacturers and the Fake Sugar sold for Toothpaste in South America. IRONY GET IT

  19. Doc Benway says:

    @dbeahn: RIGHT ON! Can I get an Amen

  20. Wally East says:

    @scoobydoo: Thanks for the geography lesson.

    It seems logical to look to bottle Chinese spring water eventually and make it a related brand name, imparting the Evian quality (whatever that’s worth).

  21. @emjsea: Ding ding ding. Exactamundo.

    Just as with the Japanese rejecting U.S. auto imports during the 70s and 80s for “inexact door gaps” and the like, the Chinese will do almost anything to keep the de facto trade imbalance wildly lopsided.

    They see the writing on the wall – that this can’t continue forever and the west will demand more Chinese trade concessions (even after last week’s cave-in) – and they’re doing their passive-agressive best to set a precedent.

  22. Buran says:

    @scoobydoo: Bottled water isn’t tap water. Please don’t insult tap water.

    Tap water is actually heavily regulated and is cleaner than bottled water. Bottled water is marketing and is a joke. Just stick with tap water and a filter.

  23. Anitra says:

    @Buran: Some bottled water IS tap water. But you’re right, in the USA, tap water is more heavily regulated and likely cleaner.

    Not true in many foreign countries though. When you travel abroad, you should be drinking bottled water.

  24. mjryan78 says:

    Owww…I think all that tainted dog food and estrogen-laden fish I ate damaged my irony gland.

  25. The Bigger Unit says:

    Retaliatory…plain and simple.

  26. BStu says:

    Its hard not to think that this is all a PR ploy by China to distract from the rampant poisoning they’ve been doing lately. Its not like it would be hard to believe China manipulating information or outright lying to “prove” their superiority over other countries. I mean, that’s pretty much their go-to response for everything.

  27. AlexPDL says:

    They have health inspectors in China? Whaaaat?!?!

  28. Buckie says:

    If you’re paying the ridiculous price charged by Evian, you’ve got to be truly NAIVE – – Evian spelled backwards! They’ve got you pegged by choosing that name!

  29. Pasketti says:


    You’re right. Evian is not your average US tapwater in an overpriced bottle. It’s your average European tapwater in an overpriced bottle.

  30. Youthier says:

    Bleh. I always hated bottled water. Until I gree up and moved into the city limits. City water is gross. Mmm…well water.

  31. tvh2k says:

    @dbeahn: Ohh if I could only digg you up!

  32. afq1483 says:

    Apparently they are cracking down hardcore. One of the former top food and drug regulators was just given a death sentence for taking bribes. Banning water seems mild in comparison.


  33. cgmaetc says:

    I don’t blame them… d’ya know what kind of animals do their business in Artesian waters?

  34. PlanetExpressdelivery says:

    I believe that water will soon become too expensive for the Chinese to purchase. They will then make a “small” substitution and replace water with Diethylene Glycol. Hmm……where have i heard that name from again?

  35. max andrews says:

    Don’t be stupid. It’s a message,
    plain and simple: We killed their
    bird, now they killed ours.

    But how could anybody off a bird
    with a cork?

    These guys aren’t just anybody.
    They’re good.

  36. Aetsen says:

    So the country that poisoned my dog, and gave her kidney failure and also is the source of SARS and Avian flu suddenly has health standards too high for friggin Evian water. Astounding.

  37. Greasy Thumb Guzik says:

    Dasani is tap water bottled by your local Coke bottler.

  38. ShadowFalls says:

    Dasani also includes several additives that make it taste nasty. I just run it through my refrigerator which has a filter, tastes good for me.

  39. satoru says:

    Here are a few other Chinese food fiascos that many are not aware of. Let me assure you this is a VERY small subset of problems that appear on a nearly monthly basis. Also these problems are never exposed by the government. Usually, reporters from Hong Kong break these kinds of stories, or it is to such an extent that it cannot be hidden, such as the baby food scandal in 2004.

    – Japan stops importing eel due to high levels of toxins and antibiotics
    – Red yolk duck eggs where either ducks were laced with drugs to create them, or toxic dyes were injected into the yolk to make it red (red yolk eggs are normal but rare and are considered to be more healthy and thus usually carry a higher price)
    – Scallop substitution with a variety of scallop that causes lip numbness
    – A major supermarket chain labels monkfish as cod fish. Monk fish while not fatal does cause stomach cramps occasionally. Ironically this occurred in Hong Kong rather than in China
    – Tofu that was being made from building plaster from a hospital construction site
    – Soy sauce that was being made from hair
    – Table salt that was was being made from toxic chemicals

    For these reasons on a nearly daily basis rich people from China go to Hong Kong to buy staple items like soy sauce since they have no idea what they might be buying back in China.

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