The water is sourced from a well on private land southwest of Durango, in the Four Corners region; Rogers calls the well “a straw in the ground” to the groundwater below. It's bottled and sold exclusively in Colorado, in a bottle that sports the Colorado flag and the words "pure spring water." By only selling to Coloradans, Rogers acknowledges that the company is limiting its market, but he hopes residents will buy local. “Who knows?” he adds. “We might become the most popular water in the state.”
The bottled-water business is deceptively complicated, and every decision about sourcing, filtering, bottling and transporting can impact the water's taste. One of the easiest ways to make good water taste bad, Rogers says, is to put it in bottles with BPA, an industrial chemical that can seep into the water and cause health problems.
The company is thinking for the long term. "Bottled water is not going away. It will never go away,” Rogers concludes, pointing to water’s recent triumph over soda in the beverage market.
Colorado STRAIGHT UP! runs $1.25 a bottle and can be found at all Safeway stores as part of the chain's “Buy Local” campaign, as well as at many gas stations; it will soon be available in Concourse C at Denver International Airport, too.