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Alko to start selling bottled water

Finland's state-owned alcohol retailer said it wants to raise the importance of drinking water, particularly when having a tipple.

Alko lanseeraa kesäkuussa uuden Välivesi-pulloveden, jonka raaka-aine tulee Kurikasta. Tuotteen myös pakkaa kurikkalainen Pramia Oy.
The bottled water will reach Alko shelves next month. Image: Alko Oy

Next month consumers will be able to find bottled water on shelves of the state-owned booze retailer Alko, as well as on the firm's website.

The company's communications chief Maritta Iso-Aho told Yle the company wants to emphasise how important it is for people to stay hydrated, especially when drinking alcohol.

The sparkling water is lightly carbonated and sourced from a well in the western municipality of Kurikka. The company will start selling bottles of Välivesi (or roughly, In-Between Water) on 3 June.

As Alko already sells mixers and non-alcoholic beer and wine, Välivesi is by no means the first booze-free beverage that the company has sold, but it will be the first time it sells bottled water.

Iso-Aho said the point of selling it is to raise discussion about the importance of drinking water, but also acknowledged that tap water in Finland is "very good."

She noted that the firm also took into consideration eventual environmental problems that bottled water can pose.

"The bottles are made out of recycled plastic and include a return deposit and the majority of [returnable] bottles are returned. The water is bottled at a plant which uses wind-generated electricity," she said.

"Drinking alcohol dries out the body and raises your blood alcohol concentration. If you remember to drink water between alcoholic beverages, you’ll stay fresher and more alert throughout the evening and into next day – a party is good when you also feel good the day after," Alko stated on its website.

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