Consumers slam sachet water producers, retailers as price skyrockets in Abia


Residents of Umuahia and other parts of Abia State have expressed outrage over the astronomical increase in price of sachet water, popularly known as pure water.

Findings showed that the price of sachet water has gone up to N50 per one.

But two weeks ago, the commodity was sold at 2 sachets for N50, meaning that the dealers have increased the retail price by 100% per cent.

Also, a bag which contains 20 sachets now goes for between N400 and N450 when compared to N300 it was sold two weeks ago by the retailers.

Findings also showed that the price increment began after a two-day strike recently embarked upon by members of Table and Sachet water Producers Association in Abia State.

Arising from the meeting, the members increased the price to N350 per bag from the previous N250, while retail shops sold to the final consumers at N50 per sachet.

Some residents of the State, who spoke on the development, said they now drink directly from boreholes and other public sources to quench taste.

However, the residents who acknowledged the health implications of drinking from other sources, appealed to both the producers and the Abia State government to immediately do something about the problem.

A public health expert, Dr Terry Omemma, who spoke on the development, said something must be done to reduce the price of drinking water to enable the poor consumers access to it.

He also warned that consuming unclean water could lead to an outbreak of major water-borne diseases.

But defending their decision to increase the price of sachet water, the members of Association of Table and Sachet water Producers in Abia State, blamed their decision on the rising cost of production materials.

The members, who spoke through Peter Nwakanma (Chairman), said they would reduce the price if the cost of production materials came down in the market.

They rather blamed retailers for selling at N50 per sachet to the public despite buying a bag at N350.

They warned the public against drinking water not approved by NAFDAC, saying that doing that could expose them to deadly diseases.

But a shop owner, Mr Onumba Kalu countered Nwakanma, saying, “they increased the price, why are they blaming the retailers?”

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