Here is a discovery that is surprising to say the least: out of seven water bottles analyzed among the main French brands, seven of them contain microplastics. What are the health hazards?
This is a discovery that does not bode well for French water bottle brands. The NGO Agir pour l’environnement, known for its commitment against the massive production of plastic, commissioned a study from the Breton laboratory Labocéa. The aim was to count and analyze the presence of plastic fragments, known as “microplastics”, in the most commercialized mineral waters in France. In total, nine of them were analyzed, for a somewhat dizzying result: seven of them contained these particles, which are mostly plastic fragments that make up bottles and caps, i.e. polyethylene terephthalate and polypropylene. . In fact, as explained to the Parisian Magali Ringoot, coordinator of the association’s health-environment campaigns, “the contamination can come from the packaging or the bottling process”. And when microplastics have been identified, it is in considerable quantities: at Vittel Kids, the one that contains the most, the analyzes revealed that there were forty microplastics there for only 33 centiliters of water… Which corresponds to about 120 per litre. For the other bottles, we are between one and eight microplastics per liter.
These numbers, already alarming, may only represent a tiny fraction of the total microplastics present; this is at least what the environmental association fears which, through the voice of its general manager Stephen Kerckhove, recalls: “What we have found is the minimum of the minimum”. In reality, the analysis still ignores “a considerable number of particles that a consumer will ingest” since these bottles “have not been stored or exposed to heat or light, and the caps do not have not been opened several times or chewed by children”, he detailed. However, for now, it appears too early to draw conclusions from these findings. On the one hand because the study has no real scientific value insofar as only one bottle of each brand was analysed: we do not have repeated tests under the same conditions on different batches, which is necessary to obtain reliable figures or trends. In addition, the health and scientific aspect of these plastic microparticles is still poorly known, because there are few certified studies on the subject. For its part, the NGO which launched the alert believes that these findings should already trigger the precautionary principle: to avoid further production of these still poorly known particles, it pleads for the banning of plastic bottles of here for the next five years.