Three guys in their 20s launch CanO Water, a canned water brand

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It’s well known that plastic isn’t good for the environment or for your health. Now, London-based startup CanO Water believes it has found the solution — and celebrities like David Gandy and Ellie Goulding are on board.

The company, founded by three friends — Ariel Booker, Perry Alexander Fielding, and Josh White — is selling tall cans of water with resealable lids for 99p (AED4.60).

The sleek-looking cans, filled with water from a spring in Austria, are already stocked in 320 locations, including Selfridges, Whole Foods, and Fenwick, as well as a number of gyms, hotels, schools, and universities. CanO Water has also started shipping to China and the Czech Republic, while it is also pitching to supermarkets and corner shops in the UK.

The idea came about when Booker, who was previously a headhunter for banks and hedge funds working in the City, took a trip to Thailand. “I canoed to this island and the sea facing side of it was devastated — covered in plastic bottles, washed up nets, and rubbish,” he said. “It was a real eye-opening moment for me.”

According to the World Economic Forum, at least eight million tonnes of plastic ends up in the ocean every year. Its 2016 report warned that there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish by 2050 unless major action is taken.

Along with friends Fielding and White, Booker came up with the idea for a canned water product when he returned from his trip to Thailand in 2015. Aluminium is the most recyclable material on the planet, according to the company.

“Aluminium doesn’t lose any of its quality when you recycle it,” White said. “75% of all aluminium we use today was first mined back in the 1800s. It’s infinitely recyclable. You might hear plastic is recyclable, but that doesn’t mean a bottle is going to be another bottle. When plastic is recycled it gets downgraded each time…eventually it cannot be recycled anymore. There are also fewer health hazards involved with drinking water from an aluminium can than from a plastic water bottle. When a plastic bottle is left in the car in direct sunlight, chemicals can start seeping into the water and can cause carcinogenic illnesses,” Fielding said. “It’s not 100% safe. The aluminium can is. It’s sealed from light and air.”

The cost of recycling plastic is also incredibly expensive, according to the company. “It actually costs more to recycle it [than to throw it away], which is the main problem,” White said. “It ends up getting dumped because nobody wants to take the cost of recycling it.”


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