SodaStream CEO Daniel Birnbaum: Bottled Water Is a Scam

Bottled water firms had complained about SodaStream's Game of Thrones parody commercial.


SodaStream CEO Daniel Birnbaum has come out swinging against the bottled water industry, calling it a scam. More specifically, he told Yahoo finance that it is the, “biggest advertising and marketing scam ever.”

Environmentalists and health advocates have been saying similar things for years. They point out that to go to all of the trouble to pump water out of the ground, bottle it and ship the bottles to market is a waste of energy and natural resources and that it also leads to additional trash everywhere. They also state that it is not regulated like public drinking water so there is no reason to believe that it is safer to drink and that it is just being pumped out of the same sources as tap water.

SodaStream’s advertising has built on this by telling consumers that they can just make their own carbonated and flavored drinks at home with tap water.

So what exactly led to Daniel Birnbaum’s comments? Well he felt the need to defend SodaStream against a backlash from the bottled water companies whose leaders cannot seem to take a joke. SodaStream had recently released a “Game of Thrones” parody commercial which was intended to “shame” people who pollute the environment with all of the plastic bottles wasted on bottled water. If you have never watched the hit HBO show, the commercial parodies a scene where a woman was forced to do a “walk of shame” naked through the streets of the city during which another woman rang a bell and yelled “shame” at her over and over again.

On the show the woman was publicly humiliated for her supposed sexual misconduct and in the SodatStream commercial the man is shamed for wasting plastic bottles.

“Basically it’s a walk of shame, only it’s about plastic bottles because the plastic bottles are indeed very shameful to the planet where we’re using so many of them and they that they just become trash in the oceans and in parks and whatnot it’s a disaster. It’s a major hazard to humanity and to our planet, ” SodaStream CEO Daniel Birnbaum told Yahoo Finance.

The water people have complained about the ad and are demanding that SodaStream cease running it. Yahoo reports that Denis Cans, the CEO of Nestlé Waters, France, and the US-based International Bottled Water Association, are among those who have sent cease and desist letters. But SodaStream is not backing down. Daniel Birnbaum said, “Of course we will not comply because there’s nothing false or misleading or defaming in that ad. It’s the simple truth but it’s very inconvenient for these folks who are making a ton of money.”

So did SodaStream’s TV commercial go too far? Watch it below and judge for yourself.

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