Water Conditioning & Purification Magazine

Viewpoint: Safe water…what we do makes it better

Tuesday, September 15th, 2020

Kurt C. Peterson, Publisher

The water treatment industry is at the forefront of water quality improvement, through technology, products, education and service. To say that dealers and distributors are on the ground floor of necessity is an understatement. As we tout the ‘water is life’ mantra, access to it may be hindered by a number of issues, such as natural disasters, local emergencies, even water scarcity. When water sources are compromised, it’s the water dealers who come to consumers’ rescue.

At press time, there are a number of situations clamoring for attention: the COVID-19 pandemic and it’s affect on health and societal norms; wildfires racing across parched California; heat waves across the desert Southwest and other weather-related destruction visited upon the Midwest and east coast, all of which are creating much higher demand and expectations for safe drinking water. And of course, bottled water is the mainstay of emergency preparedness and disaster response.

It is ironic to note that California’s exceedingly pro-environmental stance is in direct opposition to its needs: Napa Valley, Los Angeles County, Butte County and many others are suffering from wildfires that will adversely impact their populations and possibly their groundwater. California typically turns away from its anti-bottled water stance to embrace the bottled water industry when it needs it; however, it will again turn it’s back on this segment when the crises have passed. The state is currently contemplating even stiffer regulatory measures that will ultimately drive some of these companies out of business. See Global Spotlight for PWQA’s position on AB 1080 and SB 54, both included under the California Circular Economy and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act.

Water vending is not new but not as widespread as in some countries that lack public water infrastructure. David Abraham of Josab India Pvt Ltd gives an in-depth look at this segment of the water industry and how India has put it into motion. While there are many water-vending companies in the US, it’s more a convenience than a necessity, as in less affluent and developed countries. UVC LED is becoming a viable technology for water coolers, water vending machines, office water dispensers and more. Sébastien Blumenstein, PhD, Crystal IS, presents a comprehensive article on the wide range of UV disinfection, how it works and why it’s a pivotal aspect of treatment for water devices.

For years, bottled water has outpaced soft drinks and other beverages, a trend that will likely continue. The healthy lifestyle movement, young but growing, will push favorites (such as soft drinks and juices) further down the standings over the next few years. To spotlight the bottled water industry, Jill Culora, IBWA VP of Communications, presents an overview of where the industry is headed and outlines its primary focus. Public Health Editor Kelly Reynolds, MSPH, PhD, takes it a bit further with a pro-and-con look at bottled water. With different regulating agencies in play, one might think that makes the bigger difference in quality. But the real difference is water sources and how they influence treatment and bottling processes. Waterborne illness traced to bottled water consumption is rare, but not unheard of so it must be noted as a possible outcome.

With so many conferences and other events being cancelled, postponed or moved to a virtual format, it appears we won’t be seeing you in person for awhile. Zoom just isn’t the same but it is a way to keep abreast of what is happening in the industry. WQA’s Mid-Year Leadership Conference, the Annual WateReuse Symposium and others have opted for a virtual participation that begs your attention. Don’t hesitate to take part in these to gain more industry insight on how to stay successful even when you can’t be there in person. Until we meet again, stay safe and do what is right. You won’t regret it.

Viewpoint: Keeping the proper perspective on COVID-19

Saturday, August 15th, 2020

Kurt C. Peterson, Publisher

If you listen to the news too much, you might fear the global pandemic is heralding the end of the species. There are two sides to the argument of personal and public safety and the debate has often devolved into political rhetoric and heated emotional arguments. Whether you are pro or con about using masks, staying home, social distancing, etc., a lot of facts seem to be getting lost in the debates. To date, the information and policy reactions have caused more harm than the disease itself. We will have to wait on the research for any reasonable conclusions and solutions.
Each new study that contradicts what was disseminated in the media the week or month before sows even more confusion and concern. What we do know at this point is that this coronavirus infection is not waterborne. Although there have been a number of studies indicating the virus has been found in wastewater, nothing indicates that our drinking water supplies are at risk of being an infection vector. This is a point for water treatment dealers to make to their clients. As long as the public is being bombarded with competing agendas and information, however, it’s the water treatment professionals who will be called upon to give consumers some peace of mind. That can be accomplished by offering them added protection with a home water treatment system.
The pandemic will likely be with us indefinitely and planning now for what needs to be done in the future is the best way to weather the storm. As essential businesses, water treatment companies will be called upon more than ever to ensure public health is a top priority for everyone. To meet this challenge, exceptional products and customer service will be needed. It’s rather difficult to stay positive during a time of panic, but water treatment businesses and specialists have weathered worse trials.
In this ozone issue, we have an industry update from Jim Lauria of Mazzei Injector Company, LLC, on behalf of the International Ozone Association. While ozone treatment isn’t as common in the residential setting, it is well-suited to commercial and industrial applications. The association is now setting its sights on the larger industrial marketplace as a result. In addition, Greg Reyneke, MWS, of Red Fox Advisors gives an in-depth primer on residential ozone application.
Summer is supposed to be the time to enjoy the public or home swimming pool but this year things are decidedly different. That doesn’t mean pools should be overlooked, nor should maintenance be forgotten. Terry Arko of HASA, Inc. provides insight on the usage of liquid sodium hypochlorite to keep pool water safe for everyone. In addition, Public Health Editor Kelly A. Reynolds, MSPH, PhD, takes a side road to a new type of pool: those made from stock tanks. This is becoming a trend, due to space limitations and cost. But it doesn’t mean the water should be overlooked. Treatment is still a critical element for ensuring a safe swimming pool, whether it’s in the ground or above, private or municipal.
More and more shows have been turned into virtual events. Training sessions are being conducted online as well, so see the Upcoming Events section for the latest offerings. Being adaptive is a key element for success in water treatment and continuing to take advantage of the many educational sessions is important. It’s worth taking the plunge to learn more because it’s a big world out there!

Viewpoint: It’s not the end of the world

Monday, June 15th, 2020

Kurt C. Peterson, Publisher

In prepper communities and groups across the globe, there is an acronym that has gotten renewed attention as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc. TEOTWAWKI, the end of the world as we know it, is not all encompassing, however, no matter what some elements of society preach. In most places, the societal norms have been modified but not (for the most part) abandoned. Collapse of society is not eminent. But we do have to step back and look at how our consumerist society has been turned on its head. Listen to the news for more than a few days and we hear about how the inability to shop is having a major mental health impact and social distancing isn’t helping ease the feelings of isolation.

The world is not at its end, we won’t implode if we can’t go out for a night on the town and while many businesses may end their existence due to factors beyond their control, most will quietly rebuild their sales teams and product lines to factor in the influence of the pandemic. Whether it’s the hospitality industry that has been brutally crushed or the manufacturing companies who are thankful to have operations in the US rather than offshore, the resiliency of the American capitalist may be slightly muted at the moment but it has not been silenced. Technical Reviewer Peter S. Cartwright, PE, offers his perspective on what is happening in the COVID-19 world and our lives, based on his decades of water treatment expertise.

As an essential industry and a public health player, water treatment is still badly needed. Treatment options will continue to emerge in response to whatever happens next, as it always has. A basic component of water treatment that stretches back into the earliest societies, carbon is still at the forefront of a great many treatment systems. Gary Battenberg, of Dan Wood Co. treats us to a primer on the do’s and don’ts of using activated carbon.

There are many interlocking and overarching aspects of water treatment, including plumbing, though it can often be overlooked. While it is a critical element of commercial enterprises, plumbing and the associated regulations are not always at the forefront of a water specialist’s mindset…until he hits a permit brick wall in a state requiring a plumber be involved. Thomas Palkon of the IAPMO Group delves in to the ASSE 1087 standard to explain what is required in the crossover between water treatment and plumbing for commercial and food-service operations.

As states begin allowing more and more businesses to reopen, there is revelation about water safety (or lack thereof) in buildings that have sat idle for the past couple of months. You can’t just turn on the tap and expect water quality to be the same as it was before the tap was turned off. Public Health Editor Kelly A. Reynolds, MSPH, PhD, reviews the processes and procedures by which all building managers can ensure they do not make a bad situation worse. Building water supplies are at risk from stagnation and contamination, creating a public health hazard for businesses and inhabitants alike. It’s a good read with many salient points for those wishing to get back on track to reopen as soon as possible.

More events have been cancelled, postponed or are being held virtually. No, it’s not the same convention experience, but the focus on education remains the same. If you can take advantage of any educational seminar or training session, do it. You never know what you’ll learn next and how it will be of great benefit to your clients, down the road. Be the edge instead of trying to find a fancy slogan to give you an edge. Now more than ever, you are critical and essential to the well-being of our country and others that you serve. Be there for them, now and in the future.

Viewpoint: Strange and desperate times

Friday, May 15th, 2020

Kurt C. Peterson, Publisher

Unfortunately, we’ve been here before, but without the fear of dying. As COVID-19 has ravaged large cities and nursing homes, we have been reminded that life is too precious to take for granted. Adding financial burdens caused by limiting or closing businesses has been a vicious assault on an economy that has only recently seen pay and job growth. The pandemic has brought us back to recession levels; we can only hope that it doesn’t take as long as the Great Recession to make a recovery, for main street as well as Wall Street.
Anything related to water treatment is essential because clean, safe water is a public health issue. While you may have had to adapt the way you do business to current trends and the pandemic, there’s no reason to give up on being the first line of defense for consumers who are concerned about their most precious resource. We serve the public in so many ways…it’s not just about sales or the bottom line. The water quality and improvement industries may well be what stands between life and disaster.
There are a great many types of water treatment and this month we take a closer look at UV technologies. James Peterson of Crystal IS presents a question-and-answer article to clarify certain benefits and concerns surrounding the use of UV treatment. That same technology is being adapted for many other industries as part of disinfection treatment trains, such as in hospitals and other medical facilities. It’s becoming a go-to technology for what we need most to survive: air and water.
In many states, water treatment specialists must engage the services of certified plumbers to install equipment. Whether that is a requirement in your state or not, it’s important to know what the Uniform Plumbing Code and the Uniform Mechanical Code may require. Thomas Palkon, IAPMO Group, reviews the latest changes and updates to those codes. If you deal with anything plumbing-related, you should pay attention.
Getting your message across to clients and prospective customers has never been more important than right now. There’s a way to do it effectively, without causing any additional fear or panic, which seems to be ruling the day. WQA’s Communication Director, Wes Bleed, offers some tips on the best ways to communicate in a crisis situation.
Our Public Health Editor, Kelly Reynolds, PhD, MSPH, is on the front lines of the COVID-19 battle as a noted microbiologist and researcher. As such, her time is entirely devoted to the pandemic and we will not be running the On Tap column this month. We hope the pandemic curve is flattened so we can try to return to business as usual, as quickly as possible.
Most events, whether near or far, have been postponed or cancelled for the next couple of months. We’re tracking that closely to keep you updated. Many associations and organizations are moving their events to an online format to provide members with the latest and greatest information, not just the conference experience. This is the perfect opportunity to take advantage of those offerings!
We hope that next month we will have more positive news and articles, just as we hope you will continue to think of your fellow man by observing safe and sane practices. The old adage, it takes a village, could certainly be the answer to staying in business, productive, successful and healthy. Until we have the chance to see you face-to-face again, keep tuning in to the magazine, the digital magazine, the newsletter and our website. We’ve got you covered.

The dark side of globalization

Wednesday, April 15th, 2020

Kurt C. Peterson, Publisher

As most know (unless you’ve been practicing survival skills on a deserted island since last November), we live in an age of emerging contaminants, infectious diseases and, in our older years, a host of medical issues. It’s no wonder people tend to not only express concern, but openly panic in response.

As many of our industry players are involved in bottled water production and sale, we want to know how you are coping with the COVID-19 pandemic as it makes its presence known in America. In addition to hoarding, we now have social distancing, event cancellations, travel disruptions and serious adverse impacts on business, all of which are adding to the panic reaction seen on Wall Street. If hoarding (in this sense) is a response to panic and water is life, how does our industry best deal with it?

An advisory from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce has provided further detailed guidance on identifying essential critical infrastructure workers during the COVID-19 crisis. Broadly, DHS has included as essential all the roles workers in the water treatment industry play in delivering clean, safe water—from manufacturing through the entire chain of distribution to delivery and installation, including technical professionals, service providers, product installers, repair and parts replacement workers and supporting operations workers.

At press time, a great many events listed on our website are noted as postponed or cancelled. We’ll keep a close eye on this so we can add future dates, should show hosts find a better time to hold their events. Be ready for interactive format meetings and events as a replacement for large-scale conventions. Some have been postponed to the later months of the year, adding travel challenges due to winter weather impacts, while others have been cancelled outright. If, as a vendor or attendee, you receive notification of an event cancellation that we haven’t noted, please do send it to us. We strive to keep our calendar as up-to-date as possible.

This being the commercial/industrial issue, we’re featuring a technical article on each topic. Matthew Wirth of Pargreen Water Technologies presents an in-depth article on what happens when organics intrude on commercial RO systems. Remember, in large applications, failure is not an option! On the industrial side of things, reuse has been emerging in many larger manufacturing operations, as well as in the wastewater industry. Due to the finite supply of water usable for drinking and cooking, efforts should continue to be made to find and utilize non-potable water on a larger scale everywhere.

Greg Reyneke, MWS, of Redfox Advisors, writes a column every other month that is dedicated to helping you improve your business. Tech tips, common-sense approaches and more are what he offers. This month, he takes on a special subject: how to manage risk in a crisis situation. He notes that although we can’t predict or plan for every eventuality, or control what happens, we can always control how we respond.

Our Public Health Editor, Kelly Reynolds, MSPH, PhD, is a nationally noted microbiologist on whom we rely heavily for the latest and greatest information that concerns all things water. This month, she focuses on the possibility of waterborne transmission of COVID-19, based on what a recent Water Research Foundation webinar of experts discussed and what our industry can do to reassure the public we are right there with them in this fight.
We would like to take this opportunity to say goodbye to our former Editor, Darlene Scheel. We were notified of her passing late last year. Scheel joined WC&P in the summer of 1985 as a part-time staffer under Editor and Publisher, Jerry Peterson. She came to the magazine with no prior magazine experience, but was well-versed in newspaper reporting in her previous assignments in Michigan and Florida. Scheel was pivotal to the continued success of WC&P during her seven years as Editor and retired from the company in 1994.

In closing, please keep abreast of what is happening in your area through valid information sources and follow the guidance set forth by your health department or local government. Help stop the panic!

Let’s get this party started!

Wednesday, January 15th, 2020

By Kurt C. Peterson, Publisher

As I write this, it’s still 2019 and we’re getting ready to close out the year and begin anew. A business can only survive if it is dynamic and willing to make changes when necessary. You probably have already heard about the Vision 20/20 theme of the 2020 WQA Annual Convention & Exposition to be held April 1-3 in Orlando, FL. Perhaps your 20/20 vision for the new year will be inspired by the WQA Boot Camp, maybe by the input of friends and associates. Inspiration in any form should be welcome and helpful to your efforts.

There are a multitude of treatment processes available to overcome the broad range of water quality issues that are becoming more problematic each year. And, all things considered, water scarcity around the globe is also contributing to innovation . Whenever you have a finite amount of anything and need to stretch the boundaries of its useful life, there are challenges to overcome. Klaus Reichardt of Waterless Co., Inc. addresses this in his article about what comes next in the future of water treatment. With the need for new water sources, nothing should be overlooked and any source should be treated appropriate to its usage. Yes, that light at the end of the tunnel can mean progress, not a train wreck headed straight for your business.

Many people in rural America are not able to access water infrastructure and must have private wells and septic systems instead. But what happens when that is financially out of reach? You look to one of the agencies that are working hand-in-hand with drillers, equipment manufacturers, designers and installers to make clean, safe water a reality for everyone. Susan O’Grady of Xylem Corporation presents a recap of a recent project undertaken in Texas to help one such family in need. Overall, the cost effectiveness of small wells versus the cost of installing infrastructure can be eye-opening. Not every location can accommodate a modern infrastructure product so people must have options.

Throughout history, the world has suffered a number of pandemics with catastrophic consequences for entire nations. The loss of populations, productivity, etc., have crippled many an economy in times past. Regardless of all that innovation technology has provided to overcome such crises, one thing that has not been resolved is the distinct possibility of a mass-casualty health crisis, in conjunction with or due to waterborne pathogens. It’s not a lack of know-how, in most cases, but a lack of political will by leaders to put in effect those technologies that would ensure the safety of the world’s water supplies, especially when water is considered the life-blood of our species. Public Health Editor Kelly A. Reynolds, takes an in-depth look at this depressing reality facing the world, if it does not soon deal with these issues adequately.

As we embark on a new year, hoping that success is the hallmark of our efforts, are you making any New Year’s business resolutions? Have you learned anything in the past year that has prompted a change in business tactics? Would you like to share those ideas with others? If so, please contact us so WC&P can present even more tales of success for others to learn from and hopefully inspire further innovation. Until we meet again, be safe and enjoy!

Celebrate the season!

Sunday, December 15th, 2019

Kurt C. Peterson, Publisher

As 2019 comes to a close, it’s important to remember that celebrations are an important part of our success. It’s often said that nobody learns from success because they believe everything is alright and no changes are necessary. Failures, however, often result in unintended catalysts for success and that is always worth celebrating.

In this issue, we focus on water treatment that is not quite a mainstay of our niche market but as we move more toward reclamation and reuse, it’s important to focus on water resources we’ve overlooked.

Desalination has been a boon to several areas, especially arid desert regions, but it’s extending into many areas previously thought to be drought-proof. The International Desalination Association is at the forefront of helping its members find better ways to manage water resources by using desalination. Creating new sources has been ongoing for years, as the association notes in its annual industry update. More countries are exploring the possibility of augmenting traditional water sources through desalination and reclamation, and more will follow as our most precious resource dwindles.

Wastewater treatment facilities have long been at the end of the supply chain but modern thought is bringing change to that market segment as well. Reclamation, energy recovery, materials recovery and more are quickly becoming part and parcel of the final water treatment process, as noted by David Cohen of ATS Innova. He explores how more can be done to conserve both supply and materials through advanced processes.

Time and again, our authors have made note of having a solid contract in place before doing any installation of water treatment systems. Some write their own, while others have a legal beagle do it for them. The specifics of water treatment notwithstanding, it’s important to get it right. Don Cleveland of Water Color Management offers a sample contract that is far-reaching and comprehensive. It may save companies time, money and headaches to have something upon which to pattern their business contracts.

The Pacific Water Quality Association did it up big for their annual convention and trade show this year and yours truly was on hand to capture those wonderful moments for posterity. As many look to retirement (with some wanting to ‘pass the torch’), the next generation needs to get their feet wet while they are young and are more eager to learn the ropes. Our recap highlights many of the association’s family business leaders and possible successors, keeping it all in the family.

For some time, the Environmental Working Group has provided a treasure trove of data on water quality. But is that data in line with required reporting? Is it used properly or is there an agenda? Dr. Kelly A. Reynolds gives us something to think about when the subject of water-contamination reporting arises.

We will soon say goodbye to 2019 and look back at another successful year. For 60 years we’ve been by your side and we will kick off 2020 with the hope we’ll be by your successors’ sides for the next 60. Until we meet again, celebrate with gusto and get ready to make new memories and industry history. We’ll be there, too, kicking up our heels in celebration and preparing for another busy year. Salud!

Changing seasons means winter maintenance

Friday, November 15th, 2019

Kurt C. Peterson, Publisher

As autumn colors abound over the landscape of many areas, it’s time think about winter maintenance. For some, that may mean adding antifreeze to the vehicle or covering the late garden they planted. For others, it means checking and repairing/replacing pipe insulation to prevent those disastrous breaks that are sure to come.
Many people in rural areas are well acquainted with these procedures because they are critical to having a reliable water source. But there’s more to that maintenance than just wrapping the pipes. National Ground Water Association’s Charles Job gives our readers a closer look at the natural occurrences that can have an impact on their private wells and how that can affect well owners’ health. While no requirement for testing exists for private wells, owners would be well-served to take on this responsibility for their own well-being.

Over the years, water scarcity was thought to be a problem ‘somewhere else.’ In the last five to 10 years, the US has begun to experience its own scarcity issues. While there is much that can be done to conserve this precious resource, not all are yet on board with doing so. Luckily, the water treatment industry is at the forefront of introducing new water-saving appliances and processes. Gary Battenberg of Parker Hannifin takes a look at the history of groundwater depletion (which leads to water scarcity) and what can be done to mitigate the consequences of our unchecked growth and over-usage of water in the United States. Overcoming this problem will take long-term investment and engagement.

Dr. Kelly Reynolds, Public Health Editor, reports on the less well-known danger of pyrethrin exposures. While commonly celebrated as ‘natural’ pesticides, pyrethrins (and their synthetic cousins, pyrethroids) have been associated with acute poisonings. Their use is common in the US; recent deaths and new research, however, indicates a need to revisit previous studies on the safety of these chemicals.

Even though many tend to stay a bit closer to home during the end of the year, there are still plenty of industry events occurring around the world. For example, while this issue was being printed, Aquatech Amsterdam was in full swing, bringing more technology and innovation to the world of water treatment. We can’t wait to hear more and will present some details in our December issue. Though the cold season might not make you think of pools and spas, that industry’s annual big show was happening in New Orleans, LA.

And don’t forget about another upcoming big winter show, NGWA’s Groundwater Week, which will take place December 3-5 in Las Vegas, NV. It doesn’t get cold everywhere at the same time so look for what may be happening close by that will benefit you and your business. Even local shows can make a big difference in your customer base.

International concerns become local issues

Tuesday, October 15th, 2019

Kurt C. Peterson, Publisher

At press time, we are at the height of hurricane season and many storms are making their presence felt—in a big way. For the Houston, TX metro area, up to seven inches of rain are anticipated to accompany Hurricane Imelda. And more is coming. While most hurricanes spin up in the area of Western Africa, tropical depressions continue to form in the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico, promising even more flooding events. The Pacific coast is not without its own weather problems, even though most hurricanes in this region head out to open water rather than hug the western coastline.

What does this mean for you, as dealers and manufacturers? As with previous devastating hurricanes, flood water intrusion is a very real and common problem. Even after flood waters have receded, good water quality may be hard to find in affected areas. James Peterson of Crystal IS addresses these concerns in this issue. Being prepared means being ready to deal with major water quality problems and shortages. Dealers can be the first line of defense in these situations and manufacturers can assure the best possible solutions are deployed to disaster zones.

While natural disasters are problematic in the US on a more seasonal basis, weather-related crises are happening around the world, around the clock. If it’s not bad water quality, then water scarcity may well be at the root of entire nations’ stability. We are fortunate to have so many options in the US to deal with disastrous consequences but others across the globe are not so fortunate. Dale ‘DataDale’ Filhaber addresses this in her recap of a recent visit to Africa. Eye-opening is the simplicity of solutions and the need for help. A great many manufacturers and dealers are already at the forefront of philanthropic endeavors and there are always more, imperative reasons to be part of a global solution.

Speaking of solutions, many people (especially those of the younger generations) believe that all problems are solvable with technology. And that may be true, in part, as the Internet of Things (IoT) becomes more established across the globe. Manufacturers in all industries are embracing the ability to wire our world. WQA’s Kathleen Fultz examines how governments are attempting to produce a framework of regulations to ensure the safety of data that is traversing the Internet across and to these IoT devices. While the high-speed of life is already at a break-neck pace, privacy issues keep cropping up because no regulatory framework actually exists in any country.

As we review the ways technology has done marvelous things for our standard of living, there are shortfalls yet to be overcome. For the water treatment industry, that relates to water testing requirements and systems now in place. Real-time results would better equip agencies to more adequately deal with contamination events, to reassure people their water is safe. Now, there’s reason to be positive this will be a reality. Dr. Kelly A. Reynolds reports on a new Smartphone technology that when deployed, will give results in minutes or hours instead of days. Not only will the phone be able to define outbreaks, it will be able to track them as well. For consumers, this will mean fewer disruptions to their water sources as well as quicker resolutions for boil-water alerts.

That’s a lot to take in as the world speeds by but we’ll be there to keep you up-to-date and as well-informed as possible. You are the ones consumers will rely on to keep them safe. We feel honor-bound to make sure you have the latest and greatest information to allow your businesses to meet changing conditions and rectify problems as they arise, if not before.

Fall is coming…are you ready?

Sunday, September 15th, 2019

Kurt C. Peterson, Publisher

Fall temperatures should be coming your way soon, probably by the end of the month in the northernmost states. While southern states will continue to endure high temperatures longer, cooler weather will be welcome in most other places. Some companies will have to look for full- or part-time help if their family businesses are buoyed by school-aged relatives picking up the slack during the busy months. Their return to school may provide job opportunities for others, even if only short term.

With a wide range of contaminants being discussed in the media, many people may come to the conclusion that drinking water outside the home could be hazardous to their health. From lead to radon, Cryptosporidum to E. coli and everything in between, this is what helps drive business to dealers and manufacturers alike. And with many new reports on microplastics as an emerging contaminant, the shift back to public drinking water fountains in many areas is welcome, as are some of the newer containers trending upward into the consciousness of Millennial buyers.
In today’s beverage dispensing equipment (be it water, coffee, tea or other beverages), there are a host of water quality treatment options, including built-in UV disinfection, which gives consumers an added layer of protection and peace of mind. James Peterson of Klaran takes a closer look at how the need for beverage equipment disinfection is becoming a primary aspect of water treatment. Both residential and commercial water sources are prone to contamination, making it imperative to treat water at the dispensing end as well. Better water quality helps create a better end product.

Jill Culora, International Bottled Water Association’s Communications Director, reports on that industry, highlighting the various concerns and changes that have occurred since last year. Oliver Lawal (Founder and CEO) and Mitch Hansen (Marketing Specialist) of AquiSense Technologies delve into UV-C LEDs and how they are perceived in water treatment. Incorporation of this newer technology in the bottle-filler product line provides additional POU treatment, but may still be viewed with some measure of doubt.

Newer technologies often require additional testing requirements to be validated by third parties. Consumers want to know the products they purchase will do exactly what is claimed and they rely upon validation and certification, as noted by Rick Andrew of NSF International in his Water Matters column. Public Health Editor Kelly A. Reynolds, MSPH, PhD, reports on the effects of drinking contaminated water. Her column gives an in-depth look at the many contaminants and their characteristic illness traits, as well as how they are tracked and treated.

As you read this, you are probably recalling your experiences at the WQA Mid-Year Leadership Conference in San Antonio, TX. Let us know your thoughts on the conference and how it can benefit you and your business. These events are important for everyone, from the small mom-and-pop dealers to the big OEM manufacturers. Keeping your finger on the pulse of the industry puts you a few more steps ahead of your competition. Until we meet again, stay positive and keep moving forward.

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