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March/April 2009

Drinking Water Flavor

Many products can come in contact with drinking water during various stages of its treatment and delivery. This contact can have taste and odor implications that will be addressed in a proposed new ASTM International standard, WK21784, Practice for Assessing Flavor of Drinking Water.

Subcommittee E18.06 on Food and Beverage Evaluation, a part of ASTM International Committee E18 on Sensory Evaluation, has been discussing the proposed standard and is now working on its initial outline.

The number and variety of products that could potentially come in contact with drinking water complicates the issue of developing a standard. “It’s a huge nut to crack, so we are starting by addressing just one type of product, sealants and adhesives,” says Melissa Dale, chair of the WK21784 task group, and chemistry development team manager of the Water Quality Section for the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California.

After addressing sealants and adhesives, the task group plans to expand the proposed standard to be more inclusive of other types of materials that come into contact with drinking water. Dale says that WK21784 will have applications for both municipal water and the beverage industry.


Technical Information: Melissa Dale, Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, La Verne, Calif.

Phone: 909-392-5081

ASTM Staff: Scott Orthey

Phone: 610-832-9730