Open Water ranked No. 1 on the Inc. 5000 Regional Series: Midwest 2021. See the full list.
A 2009 documentary on the proliferation of plastic waste left Nicole Doucet and Jess Page, then University of Miami students, infuriated. They spent the next five years developing Open Water--100 percent recyclable and reusable aluminum bottles and cans of purified water. In 2020, it became the world's first carbon-neutral bottled-water company. With the tag line "more ocean, less plastic #byebyeplastic," it's a favorite of organizations such as the Field Museum in Chicago and the New York Aquarium, and has cruise line, gym, food-service, and corporate clients like InterContinental Hotels. As the pandemic hit those businesses hard, Open Water cracked into retail--and is looking forward to 2021. --As told to Christine Lagorio-Chafkin
Jess and I started looking at a bunch of different materials, everything from glass to plant-based plastics to cartons. Aluminum cans are the most recycled beverage packaging in the world--and yet no one was using them for water. Read more
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