As fears over water safety continue, measures are taken to ensuring mineral water prices remain unchanged.
The Consumer Protection Department at the Ministry of Supply and Internal Trade has instructed water mineral suppliers to pick up production quantities.
In comments to state-run news agency MENA, department head General Atef Yacoub said firms were told to observe their distributers and guarantee there will be no price increases.
Demand for mineral water has increased since the spillage of 500 tonnes of phosphate in the river Nile last week, causing a fear of poisoning through the water supply.
Conflicting reports on the real size of the risks added to the concerns, prompting mineral water firms to increase their production to meet demand.
General Yacoub also said teams will be inspecting and patrolling markets to ensure there are no violations, and that uncalled-for price increases do not take place.
In interviews with agents of Aqua Tap and Siwa, Aman Siwa, Aqua Siwa, as well as Nahl, all companies confirmed they do not plan to increase prices. They have all taken measures to raise supplies reaching Upper Egypt, where the barge carrying the phosphate rocks sank into the Nile. Executives at the companies also jointly said any increase would result from retailers, and not from the distributors.
As for cases of poisoning reported in Sharqeya, where hundreds have purportedly fallen sick amid fears it was due to the water, General Yacoub urged consumers not to purchase unauthorised mineral water brands. He added that “ill-hearted people have exploited the ongoing crisis to sell products of unlicensed plants”.