At age 22, Ryan Emmons launched a new bottled water product that was so innovative and socially responsible that his company managed to grow 5,000 percent in its first three years. In an age when the bottled water industry has been heavily criticized, Emmons challenged the industry norms by creating a product that is ethically and environmentally friendly as well as perfectly sustainable.
Growing up, Emmons frequently visited Hawaii with his family. Forbes said that during these trips, he would often stop by the Mauna Loa volcano to get a taste of the special water that trickled down the volcanic rock and into the Waiakea Springs.
The water in these springs is unique in many ways. For one thing, the water boasts a high pH level, making it highly alkaline. The consumption of alkaline water balances acidity levels in the body, aiding the digestive system.
The water also contains high levels of silica, a mineral that has been found to help the digestive system, the immune system and the respiratory system. In addition to this unique mineral, the water also contains essential electrolytes like sodium, magnesium and calcium that keep the body in optimal health.
The water is perfectly sustainable as well which is unusual for a natural source. The Mauna Loa region receives heavy rainfall each year. According to Specialty Food, Waiakea water is replenished every thirty days.
When Emmons decided to bottle the water and start up his company, Waiakea Hawaiian Volcanic Water, he knew that he wanted his company to change the public’s perception of the bottled water product. Environmentalists had been heavily critical of the industry because of the large buildup of plastic developing in landfills.
That’s why Emmons created an environmentally friendly method of manufacturing. Waiakea Hawaiian Volcanic Water bottles are made from recycled materials that are BPA-free. The manufacturing process takes 85 percent less energy than that of its competitors.
In addition to the eco-friendly manufacturing methods, the company has an ethical edge as well. Emmons teamed up with Pump Aid, the charity known for providing clean drinking water to different impoverished areas across the globe.
For every liter of Waiakea Water purchased, Pump Aid delivers 650 liters of clean drinking water to an underprivileged area. As the result of their partnership, 500 million liters of water have been donated across the world.
The company has taken over the bottled water industry with an annual growth rate of 170 percent. Emmons is currently launching a new manufacturing facility in Hawaii.