If we’ve spent any amount of time together, you’ve probably heard me complain about the extraordinary waste of resources that’s represented by the bottled water industry. I predict that within a decade it’ll be illegal to sell bottles of water, actually, and that’d be a great thing. Instead, we’ll have reusable bottles with small, effective filtration systems similar to what’s starting to appear in third world nations. No waste, no fuss, and with the addition of tiny flavor tablets even those weird people who don’t like the flavor of water (which completely baffles me) will be happy and drinking more water.
In fact, want a fast improvement to your health? Replace every can of soda with a big glass of ice water. If we could get kids to do this throughout the nation…
In a similar vein, I have a mixed relationship with bottled iced teas. I drink a lot of tea (must be my English blood) but prefer to have it over ice. Lots of ice. Fortunately there are even some bottled teas that have zero sweetener or additives, and one of my favorites is Tejava, a product of Crystal Geyser Water Company.
And there’s the dilemma for me: Tejava = good, but it’s another of those bottled water companies and the majority of Crystal Geyser’s revenue is from selling us millions of bottles of water each day, with all the transportation and warehousing required in modern grocery distribution.
Crystal Geyser contacted me and offered to send me some bottles of Tejava as part of them promoting winning first place at the 2011 North American Tea Championship. Of course, I didn’t know that there was a tea championship, but that’s another story…
It does beg the question of whether everyone stops at 4pm for tea break, though!
Still, the competition does sound interesting. As they describe it:
“Each submission is evaluated through blind organoleptic analysis of the following characteristics: flavor, mouthfeel, color, clarity, and balance. An overall numerical value is then calculated based on the ratings of each characteristic above, and winners are determined by rank. A total of 43 tea companies showcased an assortment of more than 130 premium iced teas.”
There, see? How many blog posts have you read today that have the word “organoleptic”? My service to you, dear reader. It refers “to the aspects of food or other substances as experienced by the senses, including taste, sight, smell, and touch.”
But back to Tejava. So it’s good bottled tea. It’s award winning. Heck, they even have a sweepstakes they’re running where the winner gets a trip to Java and Bali (very nice!) which I’ll share some details about in a second. But what about the environment? What about those millions of bottles of water marching out of the factory, through distribution channels and thence to the landfill or recycling plant?
Maybe it’s just me, though. Do you think about bottled water and the scary mountains of packaging we carelessly toss into a dumpster, trashcan or waste basket every day?
Okay, okay, I don’t want to be too gloomy about this. Instead, let me share some details about the Tejava sweepstakes with you:
“From now through September 21, 2011, residents of these fifteen (15) U.S. states – Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming – who are 21 years of age and older can go online enter the Tejava Islands of Java and Bali Adventure Sweepstakes. Just go here: http://www.tejava.com/”
Sounds cool. And if you win, check out Bali and Java to see if they have their tea in bottles and whether they drink water out of the tap – filtered or otherwise – or have their own little parade of plastic bottles being shipped in every week.
I remember hearing of a company building houses in the third world from recycled materials, and they used plastic water bottles for an insulating filler. Apparently it makes a fantastic insulator.
I’ve always thought that bottled tea was a bit absurd. All you’ve got to do is throw leaves in some water and you’ve got tea. How hard is that?