'Luxury Water' To Hit China Stores Amid Water-safety Fears

Nongfu Spring Co., one of China's biggest bottled-water suppliers, is planning to launch a "luxury" line of mineral-water products amid growing anxiety in China about water and food safety, according to a Securities Daily report Wednesday. "High-quality food has become the biggest luxury in China, even in the world, and thus we will take on the luxury water business," the report quoted Nongfu Spring Chairman Zhu Shanshan as saying. Zhu said the luxury mineral water is bottled at Moya Spring, located in China's northeastern Changbai Mountains, and has low levels of sodium, similar to the foreign high-end water brands such as Norway's Voss, Canada's Berg and Italy's Lurisia. The fancy water, which will come in glass bottles, will likely carry a high price -- as high 45 yuan ($7.20) a bottle, the report quoted company spokesman Zhou Li as saying, compared to as little as 1.30 yuan for a bottle of plain Nongfu water. The new water brand is due to launch on the Chinese market in two months.

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