Meet Lee Putney, Sr., the founder of Asé Water, the all-natural brand of alkaline water that is now the first 100% Black-owned brand of bottled water to be available nationally for wholesale distribution. The concept was launched by a team of African American executives in 2017 to counter what many felt to be a lackadaisical response to a catastrophic health crisis in Flint, Michigan.

“Water quality is now a legitimate concern because many think twice before drinking from the tap. The Asé Water company has taken charge to bring the best quality water to the marketplace,” says Davi Davenport, web TV series host and social media influencer.

In the United States, there’s an assumption that clean drinking water is a fundamental human right. For decades, bottled water was considered a luxury and unnecessary expense. The market had seen slow growth, as the concept for many consumers seemed as obscure as the need to purchase air. In most cases, residents have the convenience of being able to access drinking water from a tap within their homes.

How Clean is Your Drinking Water?

Public concerns became prevalent, five years ago in the wake of the crisis in Flint, Michigan. There as early as April of 2014, the Flint water supply was found to be visibly polluted, tainted with toxic levels of lead, chlorine, and other contaminants, E. coli bacteria, and the waterborne Legionella bacteria. Corrosive cancer-causing agents, at times, also made the water unsafe for bathing. After five years, the Flint public health crisis, which has claimed fatalities from exposure to the Legionella bacteria, remains unresolved. The population of Flint, Michigan, is predominantly African American. Many in underserved communities ascribe this gross negligence on the part of state and local officials to a lack of concern (if not a deliberate disregard for) the health and well-being of people of color.

The Community Response

In 2016, the State of the Beverage Industry revealed bottled water surpassed carbonated drinks, as the country’s leading selling beverage. Currently, 63% of its market share is being driven by purchases from people of color, as more and more African Americans and Latinos are losings confidence in the quality of their tap water. This shift in the marketplace also coincides with the Naturalist movement that has many in African American and Latino communities favoring a healthier lifestyle, clean eating, juicing, KETO or vegetarian diet plans, herbal remedies, and holistic treatments – detoxifying the body through natural alkaline plant foods, as recommended by Dr. Sebi.

Dr. Sebi’s holistic lifestyle—healing practices, recommendations for drinking all-natural alkaline water, and adhering to a plant-based diet—once heavily influenced TLC rapper Lisa ‘Left-Eye’ Lopes. He has again returned to public attention in the wake of the death of rapper Nipsey Hussle. Advocates for Dr. Sebi’s lifestyle and holistic healing practices adhere to drinking water sourced from a thermal spring (like that of the hot springs of Honduras) with alkalinity that is produced by nature. Water is necessary to flush individual cells, and according to Dr. Sebi, disease cannot exist while the body is in an alkaline state. Hence, his recommended alkaline water has been given the nickname ‘Miracle Water.’

And while bottled water is known primarily as spring water, not all bottled water is the same or of comparable quality. Packaged varieties appearing on grocer’s shelves include: Distilled Water, Purified Water, Spring Water, Natural Spring Water, Spring Water with additives, Mineral Water (Alkaline Water with added artificial electrolytes), and natural Alkaline Water with naturally occurring minerals – each vary in their constitution and purification process. Upon careful reading of the product labels, many consumers today are surprised to discover nearly half the national brands are sourcing, filtering, and packaging municipal tap water or using artificial means to purify the contents.

Why Asé?
Asé (or às̩ e or ashe) is an African philosophical concept that literally means making things happen, evoking the power of thought to produce change.

Asé Water conforms to the following standards:

• Sourced from a thermal spring;
• Double filtered;
• Ultraviolet (UV) sterilized;
• All natural pH level of 7.8;
• No added sodium bicarbonate or other electrolytes to increase alkalinity;
• Never blended with municipal water;
• Sourced and branded by an African American-owned bottling company.

Asé Water is 100% Alkaline Spring Water sourced from a thermal spring in West Virginia, double filtered, and sterilized to provide customers water that is safe and as close to Mother Nature as humanly possible. This is 100% natural alkaline spring water with no chemical additives to increase the alkalinity.

Asé Water is distributed through ePallet and ePallet.com, providing a better customer experience with ease and making the brand available for larger quantity shipments anywhere in the United States.

Source: blackbusiness.com