Clean air is a rarity in the world’s most polluted city Delhi, where local authorities are trying to curb pollution through desperate measures like traffic restrictions and banning diesel cabs. A Canadian startup is offering Delhi residents a quicker fix, in the form of canned natural air from the Rocky Mountains.
The Alberta-based company Vitality Air made news when it began selling its products in China in 2015, and quickly sold out its first shipment. The company says that China is its largest market, but anticipates its sales in India to be even bigger.
“We feel the turnout for India will be even greater as the pollution in India is actually more severe than in China,” a company representative told Mashable over email.
In India, Vitality Air plans to sell its 8 litre bottles of air from the Canadian town of Banff through kiosks in shopping malls. Each bottle comes with a built-in mask that lets users inhale the air. The company is testing 200 bottles to the country, before its official launch. The product costs $32 (Rs 2,132) on the company’s website, but its price in India is still to be decided.
Vitality Air started operations in March 2015 and models itself after the bottled water industry. “Just like bottled water, premium air is a growing industry because people are noticing the difference,” the company’s website states. It uses a giant vacuum to suck fresh air from the Rockies, which is then transferred into giant tanks, and then bottled using a clean compression technology that claims to remove any contamination. Vitality Air sells canned air as well as oxygen, but isn’t the only one to do so. An Australian company recently started selling fresh air from Down Under in China.
In 2015, India overtook China’s air pollution levels for the first time. According to the World Health Organisation, 13 of the world’s 20 most polluted cities, including Delhi, are in india. In the absence of a concrete state policy, rising air pollution levels have already boosted a mini-industry of protective devices such as air purifiers and air pollution masks.
Vitality Air isn’t just hoping to profit from India’s pollution woes, but also what it calls its exclusive, imported tag. “The residents of india and China love imported goods, and that’s exactly what we provide,” a representative said. “Many wealthier customers prefer imported water, baby powder, wines….the air you breathe shouldn’t be any different!”