The administrative court of Baden-Württemberg has decided that natural mineral water does not have to be completely free of pollutants. If humans are not harmed, even degradation products from pesticides are allowed.
If a mineral water is described as “natural”, it cannot be expected to be absolutely pure. The “original purity”, which is stipulated in the nationwide mineral and table water ordinance, requires “no absolute absence of pollutants”, the administrative court of Baden-Württemberg decided in a ruling. The reason for the negotiation was the lawsuit brought by five mineral springs, to which the state of Baden-Württemberg refused to grant approval, on the grounds that degradation products of pesticides and thus pollutants had been detected there. However, according to previous knowledge, these are not harmful to human health and no limit values are specified in the Mineral Water Ordinance. Therefore, the Administrative Court did not see enough reasons for non-admission and assessed this as a violation of the freedom of occupation. However, the Administrative Court restricted that a law was necessary to regulate certain quality requirements and their relationship to professional freedom more clearly.