Norland International - Frequently Asked Questions.
Norland International receives many questions every day from people wanting to know how to enter the bottled water business, what they need to do, and how to get started.
Following are some sample questions that will get you started in the right direction. No two bottled water situations are identical, however. If you have other questions specific to your requirements, please contact us at 1-402-441-3737, or e-mail to
Q. I have a good water source on my land, and I’ve been thinking about using it to go into the bottled water business. What do I need to do first? A. First, you’ll need to have your water source tested to determine which contaminants may be present. If you’re located outside the United States, check into bottled water regulations that may apply to you. Norland International technicians can help you find out where you need to go for information.
In the U.S., bottled water in the U.S. is considered a food product, so is subject to Food & Drug Administration (FDA) regulations. This test will give you an idea of the type of water treatment equipment you’ll need to operate within federal, state and industry standards. Because of Norland International’s broad experience in the industry, our technicians can lead you through the testing phase. They’ll also help you decide what bottling equipment would be best for the projected size of your operation.
You’ll also want to contact your state or local authority to understand the regulations associated with setting up a bottling plant in your area. In the U.S., the State Health Department or Department of Agriculture are good places to start.
Q. I’m thinking about starting up a business to produce bottled water. What equipment do I need to get started?
A. That depends primarily on what your business will focus on—large bottle (3-5 gallon) or small bottle (up to 1 gallon), or whether you intend to reach both markets. You’ll need equipment specific to the size of bottles you plan to produce. Also important is what you project the size of your start-up business volume will be. You want to choose equipment that matches your requirements into the foreseeable future. Don’t over invest, but don’t under invest, either. Take advantage of Norland International’s experience in all phases of the bottled water industry to get started on
the right foot.
Q. Does Norland International sell equipment only in the United States?
A. Norland sells and services equipment all over the world. In fact, more than half of our customers are located outside the U.S.
Q. Can Norland install my equipment and make sure it’s running right, even though I live outside the U.S.?
A. Absolutely. We have teams of experienced technicians who help install and maintain customer equipment wherever they are located around the world.
Q. How much does it cost to get started in the bottled water business? A. Depending on the size of your start-up operation, you can get started with manually- or semi-manually operated equipment. Equipment costs alone can range from $50,000 US or more for manually operated equipment up to several hundred thousand dollars for fully automatic systems.
You must also consider costs for a building and for such overhead as labor. Norland’s experts can help you get a handle on start-up costs.
Q. Is the bottled water business a profitable one to get into these days? A. The demand for bottled water continues to grow—up over 8% in the U.S. in 2006 over 2005, and over 7% worldwide. The bottled water business presents an opportunity for growth, which translates into profits. However, you must research your own market area carefully to make sure there is a need for your products–there any competing bottled water companies in your town, for example.
Q. How much space do I need to house my bottled water operation? A. The answer depends on the volume of water your business will be processing per day. Another factor will be whether you’re operating a plant to handle large bottles or small bottles (or both). Also to be considered is whether you will be doing much of the labor manually. Small washing and filling units are available for manual operations, which require less plant space than automated systems.
Q. Does Norland International offer equipment layout drawings? A. Yes, Norland offers plant layouts for operations, whether in a start-up or expansion phase. We offer both standard (generic) as well as customized designs and layouts. Federal, state and industry regulations pertain to plant design and construction for safety and sanitation reasons. Norland engineers and technicians are familiar with these regulations and take them into consideration when designing and recommending plant layouts. See sample plant layouts.
Q. How will I know where to source other items I need to operate my business, such as caps, labels and preforms?
A. Norland International can help you find the right source for your requirements. We do business around the world and are experienced in dealing with suppliers of everything you need to succeed in the bottled water industry.