Silicon Valley elites are spending $37 for less than 3 gallons of dangerous, unfiltered water - and it's flying off the shelves

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Live WaterLive WaterLive Water is flying off the shelves - but it could be dangerous

  • People in San Francisco are spending $37 for untreated, unfiltered water - and it is so popular, stores are apparently having a hard time keeping it in stock.
  • Other Silicon Valley insiders are gathering and storing their own spring water, which has not been treated.
  • Consuming "raw" water can spread infections such as cholera, Hepatitis A, and E. coli.

Silicon Valley is developing a "raw water" obsession.

In San Francisco, "unfiltered, untreated, un-sterilized spring water" from Live Water is selling for $36.99 for a 2.5 gallon jug - and flying off the shelves, the New York Times reported. Startups dedicated to untreated water are gaining steam. Zero Mass Water, which allows people to collect water from the atmosphere near their homes, has already raised $24 million in venture capital.

juicero doug evansJuiceroDoug Evans is a fan of raw water

People - including failed startup Juicero's cofounder Doug Evans - are gathering gallons of untreated water from natural springs, venturing out onto private property by night to get the water. Evans told The Times that he and his friends brought 50 gallons of raw water to Burning Man.

"I'm extreme about health, I know, but I'm not alone with this," Evans said. "There are a lot of people doing this with me. You never know who you'll run into at the spring."

Fans of the untreated water are not backed by science. However, many told the times that they feel confident that they are getting health benefits from drinking "live" water.

For example, Mukhande Singh, the founder of Live Water, told The Times that his startup's water expired after a few months - something he says is normal for "real water."

"It stays most fresh within one lunar cycle of delivery," Singh said. "If it sits around too long, it'll turn green. People don't even realize that because all their water's dead, so they never see it turn green."

However, food safety experts said there no evidence that untreated water is better for you. In fact, they say that drinking untreated water could be incredibly dangerous.

"Almost everything conceivable that can make you sick can be found in water," food safety expert Bill Marler told Business Insider. That includes bacteria and diseases such as cholera, E. coli, Hepatitis A, and Giardia.

"You can't stop consenting adults from being stupid," Marler said. "But, we should at least try."

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