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Can water be counted as a drink for shalach manos ("sending portions" on Purim) or since it is mere water does it never count as a mana ("portion")? My question would apply to soda as well because many poskim hold soda is like water.

Do any sources discuss this?

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Likutei Sichos - Lubavitcher Rabbi Zatzal says that one is Yotzei Mishloach Manos with a piece of cake and soda. However regarding water I have so far been unable to find a source that either permits it or prohibits it.

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After some research I found:

Rav Eliyashiv in Ashrei Ha'Ish pg 311:5 is quoted as holding that one can be yotzeh the mitzvah of shaloch manos with two different types of drinks and that soft drinks with flavor counts but seltzer does not count since it does not have a din of a drink(I would assume water is not good as well).

Rav Shmuel Kamenetsky in Kovetz Halachos 17:9 holds that one is not yotzeh shaloch manos with seltzer because it is like plain water which has no chasiyvus.

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"Soda is like water" -- with regards to what? Some hold soda's not chamar medina, but there are other halachot with other criteria!

The "food" used for an eruv techumin can be anything other than water or salt (but for the yeshivishly frugal, salt plus water can be used!-- hence soda should be fine), so it wouldn't surprise me if plain water can't be used for mishloach manos.

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If someone drank soda for zimun I believe the Aruch Hashulchan held it is like water – sam Feb 13 '14 at 23:59
One can say the same for water if one drinks it on Yom Kippur they are chayiv so maybe it can be used on purim – sam Feb 14 '14 at 0:01

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