Consumers of sachet water must brace themselves to pay a hundred percent more on the price of their sachet water effective 23rd April 2014, according to a statement jointly released by the Ashanti Regional branches of the National Associations of Sachet and Packaged Water Producers, and Sachet Water retailers.
Per the increases, a regular bag of 30 sachets of water, will now sell at Ghc3 cedis from the current price of one Ghc1.80. Although a sachet of water is selling at 15pesewas in the national capital Accra and other parts of the country, those in Kumasi say it will go for 20pesewas from the previous 10 pesewas.
The increase according to them has become necessary due to the increase in utility tariffs, high cost of labor and materials for production.
An Executive Committee Member of the National Association of Sachet and Packaged Water Producers, who is also the General Manager of Everpure in Kumasi, Eric Gyasi Darko, told Ultimate Radio it has almost become impossible for their members to operate under the current price list and thus wants the general public to accept the increases.
“We should have increased prices probably about a year ago when prices of our raw materials had actually gone up. We were buying our rolls that we use in producing the sachet six months ago at Ghc4.50per kilo but as we speak, we are buying it at Ghc9. That is a hundred percent and we also fuel our distribution trucks using fuel which has gone up drastically over the past six months. Taxes have also increased and all these are going against us,” he noted.
Commenting on the stance retailers in the Ashanti Region have taken to charge 20 pesewas instead of 15 pesewas per sachet, he defended the retailers concurring that anything below 20pesewas per sachet will not be in the best interest of the retailers who pay for electricity and incur other costs.
Secretary for the Sachet Water Retailers Association in Kumasi, Abena Serwaa explaining their decision to charge 20 pesewas per sachet, raised similar concerns of increasing costs of running their trade.
“We have no choice but to increase as retailers because the producers now charge us Ghc3.00 instead of the Ghc1.80. We also incur electricity costs as well as tolls and pay fees to the carriers “she explained.
Meanwhile some sachet water sellers on the streets of Kumasi told Ultimate Radio, they are unhappy with the increase. They fear consumers will not patronize the water if the increase is implemented.
“When they increase it, patronage becomes very low and you will sit here the whole day without making any proper sales because they think 20 pesewas is too high for them” a shop keeper told Ultimate Radio.
Another worried retailer complained, “The profits we make from selling the water is not much. We make small money and when they increase it, it will affect my business because the sales will not come.”
“Some time ago, we tried to increase it to twenty pesewas and they decided not to buy. We even made it to fifteen pesewas and they still refused to by so we had to just make it ten pesewas so I will sell it at the same price,” a street hawker told ultimate Radio’s Cyril Spio.
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