mitte Spotlight: German Ingenuity Seeks to Answer the Global Water Problem

mitte. YBLTV Spotlight by Katie Hernandez.

mitte. YBLTV Spotlight by Katie Hernandez.

Growing up, there was a universal understanding amongst those in Southern California area that you did not drink Los Angeles tap water. I’m sure this is relatable to anyone having grown up in metropolitan area or suburb, but the lore of the contaminated L.A. drinking water has spread over my twenty-five years. Add to that my years spent in the Las Vegas desert where plastic was wasteful but water was scarce and I have become something of a Water Mom – I am always refilling my Brita pitcher and making sure my friends bring their reusable water bottles with them. Any way that I can ensure I’m getting clean, cold water will be on my personal list and I will be sending it to all of my friends.

That is when I found out about mitte. Founded in June 2016, mitte was developed by Moritz Waldstein-Wartenberg and Dr. Faebian Bastiman in Berlin. The two bonded over a shared vision to improve lives with better water and were determined to find a way to make water safe and healthy. A year later, Martiz and Faebian Met Karan Sarian, the future CMO of mitte. With a goal of clean water, mitte sought out to to combat both the unsustainable waste of the plastic bottled water industry and the ineffectiveness and inefficiency of conventional home water systems. I am sure that many readers can relate to this point, with the struggle wasting plastic bottles battling the time wasted refilling your individual water pitcher with little discernible payoff. “Mitte,” meaning center in German, reflects water’s role as the center of human life and the German engineering that creates the backbone of the mitte system, while also providing a focus on human-centered design. Additionally, the company is based in the Mitte neighborhood in Berlin, which is also considered to be the center of both the German and European start up scene.

Mitte’s primary function is to provide healthy water that is both purified and enhanced with essential minerals through their first of its kind smart home system. While acknowledging the large amount of global waste emerges at the industrial level, mitte is also empowering the consumer to reject wasteful plastic without compromising an individual’s quality of water. The mitte smart home system is inspired by the natural water cycle, utilizing a proprietary purification technology based on distillation. This system removes all potential contaminants, including bacteria and viruses, hormones, pharmaceuticals, and more. The distilled water is then vitalized with a mineral cartridge containing natural, essential minerals for a user’s daily drinking water. The combinations between these mineral cartridges are seemingly endless, providing a custom combination based on the user’s preference.

mitte. YBLTV Spotlight by Katie Hernandez.

mitte. YBLTV Spotlight by Katie Hernandez.

The team behind Mitte brings a diverse skill set to the table, including mechanical and electrical engineering, software development, water science, business, product development, user experience, marketing, and e-commerce. Moritz Waldstein-Wartenberg, the CEO of mitte, brings a logistical background in consulting to the company and has relevant experience in building a startup, product development, market strategies, and supply chain solutions through his previous company, Coffee Circle. Karan Sarian, the mitte CMO, contributes strong leadership experience gained through several previous startups related to hardware and the e-commerce platforms. Finally, Dr. Faebian Bastiman, mitte’s CTO, is a software engineer with a Doctoral Degree in Electrical Engineering (specialising in hardware development) and the force behind mitte’s patent-pending purification technology since the beginning.

As mentioned, mitte is focused on providing clean and healthy drinking water to consumers; however, as we are becoming all too aware of, accessibility to clean water is not always a guarantee. While I may joke about drinking water and accessibility in my area, Americans were exposed to the problem of clean water first-hand during the Flint water crisis. Overseas, the problem is only growing, and mitte is hoping to help. Through a partnership with water.org, mitte has establied the One-for-One campaign; for every liter of Mitte water consumed (notified through the mitte app), mitte will make a donation at no extra cost to customers.

Interested in purchasing a mitte for your home? You can join the mitte waitlist as soon as it’s available. However, it is never too early to learn how the mitte system operates! The mitte system has a distillation chamber based on the principle of a thermoelectric heat pump, driven by two Peltier elements. The term developed by mitte for this system is called Peltier-driven-Distillation, or PDD. The system claims to be 60x cleaner than your average pitcher filter, 3x cleaner than Reverse Osmosis systems, and 4x more efficient than other home distillers. Following purification, Mitte uses a mineral cartridge to replicate the natural mineralization process when water flows through rocks. The water that has been distilled flows through mineral layers through the Mitte cartridge. Possible combinations are based on special characteristics, including taste, pH, and Total Dissolved Solids. The Mitte app will be the control panel for the mitte system and will be where you can control:

  • the amount of water per day purified
  • at what temperature
  • when it will be purified
  • how much water is consumed
  • when to order new cartridges
  • how much you have contributed to water.org

Included with each Mitte will be a plumbed-in kit vs. stand alone (for those looking for a direct water line), 3 different cartridges, and the connected Smart App to control Mitte.

“We are dedicated in improving the lives of everyone. Better water creates better lives for individuals and communities, it also means it will be better for the environment. We know that if we can change the way people consume their water – we can change the world. Stay tuned for more products from mitte!” mitte

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Special Thanks to Natalie Blacker, Moritz Waldstein-Wartenberg , Karan Sarian, and Dr. Faebian Bastiman for contributing to this article.