The maker of Ice Mountain bottled water faces a proposed class action that claims the company failed to warn consumers that its “100% Natural Spring Water” is contaminated with potentially hazardous microplastics.
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The 16-page lawsuit alleges BlueTriton Brands, Inc. has misled consumers by advertising its products as “100% Natural” despite knowing the bottled water contains microplastics—tiny plastic particles that can leach into the water during manufacturing or as plastic degrades.
According to the suit, these microscopic fragments of plastic are far from “natural,” as they are typically made from synthetic substances such as polypropylene, polyethylene, polyacetal and polystyrene. As such, the filing contends that the bottled water’s representation is misleading because no reasonable consumer would expect a “100% Natural” product to contain synthetic contaminants.
The filing explains that once microplastics are absorbed into the body, they can be carried through the blood and accumulate in the gut, liver, kidney and other organs. They can also act as carriers to transport other environmental pollutants throughout the body, the lawsuit adds.
As the suit tells it, although the impact of exposure in humans is still unknown, the toxic effects of microplastics on marine organisms “have been extensively documented.” In addition, recent research has shown acute and chronic exposure to these microparticles may cause damage to mammalian gut bacteria, the case relays.
The lawsuit looks to represent anyone in the United States who purchased Ice Mountain bottled water within the past five years.
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