A handful of Walmart stores in northern Florida are now home to Live Alkaline Water, the first Black-owned bottled water brand to ever hit the supercenter’s shelves.
As reported by First Coast News, the bottled water brand is the brainchild of business partners Robert McCray and Dr. Shayla Green. McCray said he got the idea for the business when his great-aunt revealed that the family owned a natural spring aquifer in North Carolina. It’d belonged to his ancestors for over a century, and now it was his.
“So, I had a great aunt that came to me and said, ‘Look, stop the church service,’ she came in, she said, ‘you follow me, look down the fields, she said, ‘Your blood of your ancestors is crying out for you. You’re responsible for this,’” he remembered.
After getting a taste of the fresh water himself, McCray teamed up with Dr. Green and the two pitched their idea for a bottled water brand to several Walmart stores. The company’s water is sourced from “a natural spring, an aquifer and a mineral rock bed” that’s situated some 800 feet below ground, but that still wasn’t enough to win over some buyers. After several denials, one store in Florida finally said yes and the rest is history.
“I was very excited, praising God first and foremost,” Green said.
McCray said it was hard to “keep his composure” when he first heard the news that Walmart had agreed to carry their product.
According to the station, Live Alkaline Water flew off the shelves after being in stores for only a month. It’s already sold out at three Walmart locations but is available for purchase online and at other retailers across northern Florida.
So what exactly is alkaline water? Pegged as less acidic than tap or regular bottled water, alkaline water is said to have a number of benefits, including the ability to balance the body’s pH levels, provide powerful antioxidants and detoxify by “cleansing your cells & ridding your body of toxins that slow you down,” according to the company’s website.
“Healthy people make a healthy community,” McCray said. “I say ‘eat right, drink right, you begin to think right.’