Trackable Beverages This tap water “isoscape” map shows how hydrogen and oxygen isotopes vary throughout the country. Geographic factors like latitude, altitude and proximity to coasts all play a role in this isotopic variation. The cities on the map show where the researchers tested tap water along with bottled water, soda and beer. ACS/Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry
These geographically specific signatures show up in human hair making a record of you travels a real possibility.
To test this theory, the scientists analyzed tap water from 33 cities and looked at isotope patterns in Dasani bottled water, Coca-Cola Classic and Budweiser. They found the beverage isotope pattern from those cities matched the tap water pattern — which makes sense, because many beverage companies produce their drinks regionally instead of in one main location. For example, if you drink a Bud in Utah, it probably came from the Anheuser-Busch plant in Fort Collins, Colo., not St. Louis.