First appearing on the market in 1958, Volvic water comes from the natural artesian Clairvic Spring in central France. The spring is located within one of the oldest and biggest preserved ecosystems in Europe, Volcanoes Regional Natural Park of Auvergne. The park consists of a chain of ancient dormant volcanoes. The water comes from rainfall and snow melt that filters through layers of volcanic rock and collects in an underground spring over 90 meters below the surface. The water is bottled in a town near the spring called Volvic, which gives the water its name (1).
As the water flows through 6 different porous layers of volcanic rock, it is filtered and collects natural minerals. The mineral content for the water is listed on Volvic water’s website. The water contains 12 mg/L of Calcium, 9 mg/L of Sulfates, 6 mg/L of Potassium, 74 mg/L of Bicarbonates, 32 mg/L of Silica, and 15 mg/L of Chlorides. Unlike some of the other bottled artesian waters we have looked at, Volvic water has a rather low pH level of 7 (1). If you are looking specifically for a bottled alkaline water, this may not be the water for you since its pH level is neutral and is not high enough to be considered alkaline. If you aren’t aware of the health benefits that alkaline water offers you may want to read our article to learn more.
The Volvic bottling system is entirely automated to ensure that the water maintains its natural qualities and is not contaminated by outside sources. The water is drawn directly from Clairvic Spring and flows up to the bottling plant through a stainless-steel pipeline where it is immediately bottled. The Volvic Quality Laboratory regularly collects samples and analyzes the water quality throughout the bottling process. They report that hundreds of tests are conducting each day to ensure the water retains its original characteristics and maintains its natural purity. Volvic water is regularly inspected and certified by the French Public Health Ministry which follows the World Health Organization guidelines for bottled water. Like many of their competitors, Volvic water also participates in the NSF Bottled Water Certification program (1).
With respect to the environment, the company enlists the services of expert hydrogeologists to determine the annual sales quantities that Volvic will bottle. To help preserve the spring for future generations, Volvic water only bottles 15% of the natural flow of Clairvic spring. They are committed to continually looking for new ways to reduce their impact on the environment. As a part of this commitment, Volvic water became certified in 2008 as ISO 14001. This certification from the International Organization for Standardization indicates that Volvic has a systematic approach to handling environmental issues within their organization (2). With this systematic approach, Volvic has reduced its carbon footprint by 40% since 2008.
When looking at different bottled water brands and trying to select the best option, it is important to look not only at the quality of the water but also the quality of the bottle it is packaged in. Recent studies show plastic bottles may have a negative impact on your health. Most of the studies have shown that Bisphenol A otherwise known as BPA, a chemical found in some plastic bottles, can behave similar to estrogen and other hormones in your body (3). Volvic water is packaged in polyethylene terephthalate or PET plastic water bottles that are BPA free, 100% recyclable, and globally recognized as safe and non-toxic (4). Volvic water wants to, not only make their water bottles safe for you to drink from, but also do their part in reducing the amount of plastic waste. As a result of their effort to reduce plastic waste, they were able to reduce the amount of plastic weight in their bottles by 6.5% between 2008 and 2012.
Volvic water lists three different partners on their website: Whole Planet Foundation, Kaufman Music Center, and Caravan Stylist Studio. Whole Planet Foundation, a Whole Foods Market foundation, is a nonprofit organization who works to alleviate poverty where the company sources its products by providing loans to home-based businesses and creating opportunities for growth. The Kaufman Music Center, located in New York City, works to stimulate appreciation of and participation in music through education and performances. Volvic is the official water of the Merkin Concert Hall in the Kaufman Music Center. Caravan Stylist Studio, also located in New York City, is an innovative beauty studio that pairs actresses, tastemakers, and media influencers with top fashion designers and beauty experts. Volvic supports the studio by participating in their events.
If you are interested in trying Volvic water for yourself, you can find Volvic water a variety of retail stores including: Rainbow, Draeger’s Market, Grassroots, Dean’s Natural Foods, Garden of Eden Marketplace, Whole Foods Market, Publix, The Fresh Market, and Fred Meyer. For a complete list of the retailers selling Volvic water, you can visit their website.
Volvic water, sourced from Clairvic spring in central France, certainly has many qualities that make it a good bottled water choice. The Clairvic spring is surrounded by protected land within the Volcanoes Regional Natural Park of Auvergne providing an element of purity to the water. The water, which is naturally filtered through volcanic rock, contains minerals without the bitter taste. Unfortunately, the water does have a very low pH level of 7, compared to other alkaline bottled water brands. If you are searching for an alkaline bottled water this isn’t the bottled water brand for you. While it is clear that Volvic water does their part to care for and give back to the environment they haven’t invested in the environment as heavily as some other brands. Compared to your tap water, Volvic is likely a pure and healthy alternative but compared to other bottled water brands you can probably find better options out there.