“I did contact Fiji Water before my trip, and Six mentioned that the company ‘takes journalists to Fiji’; I didn’t follow up about joining such a junket. Despite news reports showing that Fiji wouldn’t cooperate with journalists who went there independently, I chose to do so and visited the factory on a public tour. I had planned to speak to Fiji Water’s local representatives, and to visit the surrounding villages, afterward. But it was at that point that I was arrested by Fijian police, interrogated about my plans to write about Fiji Water, and threatened with imprisonment and rape. After that incident, personnel at the US embassy strongly encouraged me not to visit the villages.”
Fiji Water is either a benign corporation which wants to benefit a developing nation and help the environment at the same time, or it is a secretive polluter which props up a military dictatorship and engages in deceptive practices to burnish its image. Mother Jones‘ Anna Lenzer makes the case for the latter here.