Virtual Water Footprint of Products by Timm Kekeritz
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// Finally, reprint of the popular 2007 edition //
You can find the 2010 edition at http://virtualwater.eu/

The poster shows the amount of water consumed in the production of everyday food products.
Based on the study by Hoeckstra et al. in their study Water Footprint of Nations, German designer Timm Kekeritz created the design in 2007.
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Water is probably one of the most precious resources and vital for everyone’s everyday life. Despite this obvious fact, people use large amounts of water: drinking, cooking and washing, but even more for producing things such as food, paper, cotton clothes, and almost every other physical product.
One of the most important research papers in this field is Chapagain, A.K. and Hoekstra, A.Y. (2004), »Water footprints of nations«, Value of Water Research Report Series No. 16, UNESCO-IHE, Delft, the Netherlands.
Designer Timm Kekeritz created a set of infographics, visualizing parts of their research data, to make the issue of virtual water and the water footprint perceptible.
The water footprint of a person, company or nation is defined as the total volume of freshwater that is used to produce the commodities, goods and services consumed by the person, company or nation.
The idea of the water footprint is quite similar to the ecological footprint, but focussing on the use of water.
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[excerpt from waterfootprint.org]
Virtual water content: The virtual-water content of a product (a commodity, good or service) is the volume of freshwater used to produce the product, measured at the place where the product was actually produced (production-site definition). It refers to the sum of the water use in the various steps of the production chain. The virtual-water content of a product can also be defined as the volume of water that would have been required to produce the product at the place where the product is consumed (consumption-site definition). We recommend to use the production-site definition and to mention it explicitly when the consumption-site definition is used. The adjective ‘virtual’ refers to the fact that most of the water used to produce a product is not contained in the product. The real-water content of products is generally negligible if compared to the virtual-water content.

Timm Kekeritz is an interaction and information designer at the consultancy Raureif in Berlin, Germany.

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