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A new star on the bottled water horizon

Magnesium-rich BlueStar targets health-conscious consumers

Blue Star Bottles   

G-UP Corporation recently launched BlueStar Sparkling Spring water, which comes in a 28-ounce cobalt blue glass bottle, and BlueStar Adobe Spring Water in 20-ounce PET bottles, both of which contain magnesium-rich Adobe Springs mineral water from California


When G-UP Corporation (San Jose, CA), the makers of The Silicon Valley energy drink, started looking for a natural spring for a new bottled sparkling spring water product, they didn't have to look too far. Almost in their backyard sits Adobe Springs, a magnesium-rich mineral water source located in a rugged, mountainous area about 60 miles southeast of San Francisco.

A mineral water aficionado, G-UP president and CEO Dominique Nguyen says he was impressed not only with the taste of Adobe Springs but also with its high magnesium content, which is hard to find in US natural spring water. Nguyen was convinced Adobe Springs was the best water source, not only for his new BlueStar line, but also for himself.

"I have since switched to [BlueStar] for my drinking. I and many customers agree that BlueStar water tastes better than other foreign or domestic spring waters. I also feel better every day after drinking BlueStar," he attests.

G-UP Corporation launched BlueStar Sparkling Spring Water about six months ago, but the brand is already getting rave reviews. BlueStar won the bronze star in the Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting Awards in February, the only US bottled water in the top five.

The brand comes in a 28-ounce cobalt blue glass bottle and 12-ounce cans. Although BlueStar is currently only available in California, Nguyen says there are plans to expand into other states this year and into other countries in 2004. Consumers in California can find BlueStar in grocery stores, specialty stores and restaurants. G-UP Corporation also receives orders for BlueStar from consumers in other states via telephone and the company's website.

Tony J. Varni, operations manager for Mid-State Bottling in Modesto, the contract packer for the product, says the water is trucked from the spring source to the bottler where carbonation is added to create BlueStar Sparkling Spring Water. A non-carbonated spring water, called BlueStar Adobe Springs Water, also will be bottled by Mid-State and will be available later this spring.

As a domestic water product, Nguyen says BlueStar provides consumers with high mineral quality and good taste but at a better price compared to imports. And, Nguyen believes health-conscious consumers will be drawn to the product for the natural therapeutic properties of its high magnesium content. In fact, Nguyen is so convinced of the health benefits of his magnesium-rich water, G-UP uses it as a selling point. The bottle labels reference the water's natural magnesium content and the company's website and promotional materials highlight medical research linking magnesium to longevity and better health.

According to Dr. Carolyn Dean, a certified clinical nutritionist and author of The Miracle of Magnesium, magnesium deficiency, which a large percentage of Americans suffer from, is linked to increased risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes. Increasing magnesium intake has also been shown to alleviate a number of other health problems, including migraines, muscle pain, insomnia and depression.

With about 100 milligrams of magnesium per liter and no sodium, BlueStar provides consumers with a healthy dose of magnesium. Most US bottled water products have, on average, about 2.7 milligrams of magnesium per liter compared with an average of 20 milligrams per liter in European mineral waters.

Adobe Springs has recently been getting some buzz because of its rich magnesium content. For instance, Bill Sardi, author of In Search of the World's Best Water, touts Adobe Springs for its balanced ratio of magnesium calcium and sodium. Located at 1,375 feet above sea level in an isolated location, the springs are kept pure without any influence from insecticides, herbicides, chemicals or smog, says Paul Mason, owner of Adobe Springs Water Company.

The location of the springs is so steep it is not possible to build a bottling plant at the source. "We're zoned agricultural and there's no labor force out here in this wilderness to work at a bottling plant," says Mason.

Varni says Noah's Mid-State Beverage, the bottler for Noah's California Spring Water, began bottling Adobe Springs water 11 years ago.

"We knew that Adobe Springs was different in the fact that it was mineral rich compared to most other spring waters in California and we thought if we were going to come out with something we might as well differentiate ourselves a little bit. The health benefits of the water were just an added bonus," he says.

Varni says he now promotes Adobe Springs water to any beverage marketer looking to produce a mineral water product.

-Heather Todd

Tel: +1 408/392-0688
Net: www.bluestarsprings

Beverage World, April 2003, page 14

This page was first uploaded to The Magnesium Web Site on May 1, 2003