HOBART, AAP – Tap water from a tiny regional town in Tasmania, which was declared undrinkable three years ago, is now considered the world’s best.
Rossarden’s water treatment plant recently claimed the Best Municipal Water 2021 award at the Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting event in America.
The global event judged water from five continents, 14 countries and 19 US states.
It is the first time water from Australia has won the award in the event’s 31-year history.
“Just over three years ago, Rossarden was under a ‘Do Not Consume’ notice,” TasWater acting chief executive Juliet Mercer said.
A program to upgrade water infrastructure across Tasmania has seen public health alerts removed from 29 towns.
Rossarden in the state’s northern midlands is home to about 42 people.
“Seeing a town where so recently you could not even drink the water now recognised as having the best drinking water in the world is an incredible result,” Ms Mercer said.
Water was judged under guidelines similar to wine tasting and rated on appearance, aroma, taste, mouth feel and aftertaste.
Water Industry Operators Association chief operations officer Craig Mathisen said the organisation conducted taste tests across Australia to decide which drops would represent the country.
“This celebrates our unsung heroes – the water operators and their crews, who despite the impacts of COVID-19 and before that drought, fires and floods, ensure we have water, which is essential to keep us alive,” he said.
The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California was considered to have the best municipal water in America.
The top bottled water award was given to Ulunom in Japan, while New Zealand’s Fleck Sparkling Mineral Water took out the best sparkling category.