Ninety-three percent of the bottles showed "some sign" of microplastic contamination, with an average of 10 plastic particles per liter of water larger than.1 millimeter and an average of 325 plastic particles per liter of tinier pieces.
The tested plastic particles are then analysed under a microscope with a crime-scene investigation light shining on the particles allowing them to glow like tiny embers, Orb Media reported.
Most microplastics are thought to pass through our systems, although very small particles (such as those found in the surveyed bottled water) may be absorbed into our organs, such as the liver and kidneys.
While the majority of the samples came in plastic bottles, water in glass bottles also held microplastic.
"They're more concerning when it comes to the science", Dr. Sherri Mason, chemistry professor and chair of SUNY Fredonia's Department of Geology and Environment Sciences, explained.
The study tested 259 bottles from 11 brands, including Aquafina, Evian, Dasani, Nestle Pure Life and San Pelligrino, purchased from 19 locations in nine countries. In total, 250 bottles of water in Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Lebanon, Mexico, Thailand, and the United States were tested.
This may not seem like a huge deal at first-the bottles are made up of plastic, after all-remember that because plastic doesn't break down, it can accumulate wherever it lands, including our bodies.
Addicted to bottled water because it's "cleaner" than tap water? A new report commissioned by journalism organization Orb Media, however, reminds us that plastic pollution isn't a problem that we can avoid ourselves.
"When we think about the composition of the plastic, whether there might be toxins in it, to what extent they might carry harmful constituents, what actually the particles might do in the body - there's just not the research there to tell us".
"We don't even know all the chemicals in plastics", Muncke told Orb.
- According to UAE and Gulf Standards No. UAE.S GSO 1025: 2014 for bottled water, the pH of water should be between 6.5 - 8.5. This average amount is twice as much as what was found within tap water that was studied previously. The company also pointed out that the Nile Red Dye technique is known to produce false positives.
International Bottled Water Association President and CEO Joe Doass said in a statement that the report's findings "do nothing more than unnecessarily scare consumers", and added that "The bottled water industry is committed to providing consumers with the safest and highest quality products", reported USA Today. Biserli and Wahaha did not respond to Orb's request for comment.