Mexicans big drinkers of bottled water

Published: Sept. 20, 2005 at 9:48 PM

MEXICO CITY, Sept. 20 (UPI) -- Mexico's residents may brush their teeth with it and bathe in it, but they are afraid to drink the water that comes out of the tap.

The Arizona Republic reports that the country is second only to the United States in its consumption of bottled water. Multinational food and beverage companies have big bottling plants in Mexico just for water, with Pepsi, for example, making 40 percent of its revenues there from water, not soft drinks.

The government has made huge and successful efforts to provide clean water. Its effort to convince the public of the water's safety are less successful.

"No one drinks water from the faucet here," Felix Garcia Bedoya told the Republic as he delivered jugs of water in Mexico City. "The government says it's safe, but no one believes them."

Salomon Abedrop, president of the National Association of Water and Sanitation Cos., said that if the water was a source of infection it would be obvious since so many people use tap water for their teeth and cleaning vegetables.

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