People who buy our products trust that our water is safe and tastes good. We believe people have a right to know where their water comes from and what’s in it, and they should be able to easily find that information. In fact, we think it is a brand advantage to make quality information – from source to processing to contents – easily accessible to consumers. This information supports the confidence people have in our product quality. Our quality control process begins with source selection and continues through bottling. Our labels and packaging are the gateways to the full extent of the water quality information about our brands.
Since 2005, we have made detailed water quality reports publicly available for all of our brands. These reports are comparable to those published by public water utilities and are based on independent testing results from certified laboratories.
All our products come from carefully selected sources, use state-of-the-art filtration and quality control processes and are bottled in sanitary conditions.
Sources of Water
Ozarka® Brand Natural Spring Water is sourced from various east-Texas springs located in 7,200 acres of woodlands in Henderson, Walker and Wood counties. Beneath this beautiful countryside, the rocks are composed mostly of silica–remnants from when the seas retreated from the area during the Cretaceous Period (approximately 80 million years ago). Because silica does not dissolve easily, the water from our spring sources is relatively low in mineral content, which is the reason for Ozarka’s refreshing great taste.
We continue to review our current sources and occasionally seek new sources that meet our natural spring water requirements and standards.
Ozarka Bottled Water Quality Report
We’ve broken down the mineral content so you can see why you enjoy Ozarka® Brand Natural Spring Water. All values provided in milligrams/liter (mg/l) unless indicated otherwise.
Water Quality Regulations and Oversight
The bottled water industry is one of the few industries that has its own standard of good manufacturing practices that go above and beyond most other food products. The industry is regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which regulates food industries and the pharmaceutical industry as well. Under the Safe Drinking Water Act, FDA regulations for bottled water must be at least as stringent as those imposed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for tap water. Bottled water is generally required to be tested for the same parameters as tap water, but the standards are, in many cases, stricter than for tap water.
11 Steps to Quality Assurance
1. Source Selection and Monitoring
- Our spring water sources are natural springs, which come from aquifers.
- Spring selection is made on the basis of natural composition and freedom from contamination, availability and taste.
- In-house and trained geologists and hydrogeologists monitor springs regularly at the source.
- Only sustainable sources, which meet our stringent requirements for quality and environmental harmony, are utilized.
- Spring water is collected using state-of-the-art equipment to prevent chances of contamination and safeguard the water’s natural characteristics.
2. Source Water Receiving and Monitoring
- Spring water is transported from the natural spring either by food-grade pipelines or through delivery in sanitary stainless steel tankers, direct to our plants.
- Trained Quality Assurance personnel at each plant take daily samples of incoming spring water and test for signs of contamination.
- Monitoring of the spring water collection and receiving process is performed regularly.
- One-micron filters remove sand or other particles, which may happen to be present.
3. Water Storage and Monitoring
- Spring water is temporarily held in food-grade storage tanks upon initial receipt at the plant.
- Here, the water is further tested for conformance to specifications.
4. Activated Carbon Filtration
- Removes chlorine that was added.
- Specialized two-stage advanced micro-filters, designed specifically for our process, filter the raw spring water.
- These filters are pharmaceutical grade and are designed to remove particles as small as 0.2 micron in diameter.
6. Ultraviolet Light/Ozone Disinfection
- This process follows micro-filtration and is designed to destroy bacteria which may happen to be present.
- The combined effects of micro-filtration and ultraviolet light/ozone disinfection provide added assurance of product safety.
7. Bottling Control
- Bottling is conducted under very controlled conditions using state-of-the-art equipment.
- The spring water is monitored during the filling and capping process to prevent contamination from the environment.
- Each bottle is given a specific code that identifies the plant location, bottling line and time produced.
- Each plant maintains bottling specifications and control.
8. Packaging Control
- Packaging is conducted using the latest in modern equipment.
- Bottles, caps and labels are carefully controlled and monitored by lot.
- Most bottles are manufactured on-site for quality control.
- Packaging materials not meeting internal standards are rejected.
9. Clean-In-Place (C.I.P.) Sanitation Process
- Line sanitation practices include advanced internal pipe and equipment cleaning methods, called C.I.P.
- This automated cleaning process recirculates detergent and sanitizing solutions at the precise temperatures and time to ensure total control and maximum effectiveness of the line sanitation process.
10. Plant Quality Control and HACCP*. Program
- Each plant has a fully staffed Quality Assurance Department and Laboratory that maintain the plant Quality Control processes.
- b. Water, packaging materials and plant processes are carefully monitored to ensure they meet company specifications and standards.
*Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point
11. Corporate Quality Assurance Program
- National Testing Laboratory is equipped with state-of-the-art testing machinery and staffed with degreed, experienced personnel.
- Comparative analyses are performed on products in accordance with State and Federal regulatory standards.
- Independent from the plant Quality Control and Quality Assurance Departments, the Corporate Quality Assurance program sets company-wide standards, specifications and monitors plant quality programs.