Demand for bottled water shoots up

Fear of contracting H1N1 flu seems to have spurred the trend


 Fear of the H1N1 influenza virus and repeated guidelines issued by the government and doctors to consume clean water to stay virus-free has led to a spurt in health-consciousness among Bangaloreans the last fortnight. One aspect in which this comes through is the desire to opt for packaged water. 

A new item making its presence on all tables at Emgees on M G Road is a one-litre water bottle.

Venu, restaurant manager, said this followed a sudden demand from customers the last fortnight to be served only packaged water.

Running out

“We keep rapidly exhausting our cases (containing 30 bottles) and have placed orders for more to meet the demand,” he said. The fear of getting the flu is clearly on the minds of customers, he added.

Nizamuddin, Deputy General Manager of the Bangalore branch of Bisleri International, agrees. “The demand for the 20-litre can at offices and homes has surged here. We have noticed a rise in demand by 25 per cent in the last one week, and are going all out to meet it,” he says.

“Shortage in supply is not experienced at our offices since we have water treatment plants at Mysore, Chennai, Shimoga, Belgaum, Bellary and Mangalore and can get stocks from there. It is not just Bangalore, a trend of rise in demand for packaged water is noticed in Mysore too,” he added.

Manasa of Lakshmi Associates, a distributor of packaged water, says, “We are clearly seeing an increase in demand. Even small eateries are calling up and asking us to supply stocks of one-litre bottles, saying that their customers are suddenly asking for it.”

 Co-ordinator at Pepsi Co, to which the ‘Aquafina’ brand belongs, says his concern too has seen an increase in demand, and it will take time to work out the exact percentage points. “We arrive at our calculations by comparing the orders this month with the corresponding period the previous year, and we notice an increase.”

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