In the UK, both Tesco and Walmart-owned Asda are under attack for selling private brand bottled water that essentially is tap water.
According to the Inbdependent, "Both supermarkets denied misleading their customers in any way, saying the bottles gave customers a clear idea of what they were buying.
"A spokeswoman for Asda, which gets its bottled water supplied by Yorkshire Water, said it was wrong to call its product tap water. 'Our Smart Price water is treated to remove chlorine, further filtered, then bottled,' she said. 'If sparkling, carbon dioxide is added for a bit of fizz. The label on the bottle tells our customers just that'."
At Tesco, a spokesperson said: "Our Everyday Value Still Water goes through a complex filtration process to improve the taste and remove impurities ... Tesco sells a wide range of waters to suit all tastes and budgets. All of our products are clearly labelled so customers know what they are buying."
Let's go back to the earlier story about companies being sued because of questions about content and labels...
The question that companies need to ask themselves these days is if the creation of certain product lines are going to raise questions about their honesty and transparency. Maybe the labels say exactly what Tesco and Asda say they say. But that may not be good enough anymore, because the information machine works so fast, society is so litigious, and transparency is so valued.