Scarcity, High Prices of Mosquito Repellents

Dishonest traders cash in on dengue outbreak

ANM Mohibub Uz Zaman

2 August, 2019 12:00 AM printer

People, who are exposed to mosquito menace and dengue attack, are suffering much due to scarcity and high prices of mosquito repellents in the country.

A section of unscrupulous businessmen are capitalising a high demand for mosquito repellents as dengue fever has turned into epidemic across the country, infecting thousands of people.

Sources said sales and prices of coils, spray, liquid vaporizers, creams, gels, electric bats, electric lights, nets and other mosquito-killing equipment have risen in the country.

Demand for aerosol and other mosquito repellant cream and lotion is very high.

Shopkeepers said they are facing a higher demand for mosquito repellant cream and lotion and their stock of the products is going out every day.

Odomos, a product of Indian fast-moving consumer goods manufacturer Dabur, has the most demand.

Odomos uses a formula that masks the distinctive body odour that human skin emits, making one virtually invisible to mosquitoes.

It is an effective protection from mosquitoes, the carriers of deadly viruses that cause diseases like Dengue, Chikungunya, Malaria, Filaria and Encephalitis.

Odomos is one of the best protectors against mosquito bites for up to 8 hours.

People send their children to schools and go to offices after applying Osomos in body. Some shops are selling it at higher prices due to its higher demand.

A 100gm tube of odomos was sold at Tk 200, but now it was selling at Tk 400.

Electric bat was sold at Tk 300 while it was selling at Tk 400 to 500 and gone out of stock from most shops.

Quamrul Hasan, business director of ACI Consumer Brands, told the daily sun that due to rising awareness and mosquito menace, prices of mosquito repellants are higher.

Demand for aerosol is as higher as it kills mosquitoes while sales of other equipment like coils and vaporizers go higher.    

When asked that some businessmen are taking higher prices of those products on pleas of shortages of supply against demand to the official, he said.

They have enough stock of the products and their prices are not going higher.

The demand for mosquito repellants has doubled in the country, said the business director of ACI Consumer Brands.

Saidur Rahman, a private company employee, said he visited Lazz Pharma Shyamoli, Mohammadpur branch for collecting Odomos but they said they don’t have it as their entire product sold out.

He also visited different shops and pharmacies in the capital, but didn’t get Odomos.

While visiting Shapna super shop’s Mohammadi Housing branch on Wednesday, this correspondent found that some 2-4 pieces of vaporizer oil but no aerosol.

The salesman said all of their aerosols have sold out due to a higher demand.

None of local firms make mosquito repellent creams but local Purnava makes a spray for personal use that has the same effect as Odomas.

A local company produces mosquito repellant spray for personal use which contains a blend of citronella, eucalyptus oil and peppermint oil. The demand of it also goes higher.

Since dengue has broken out and its occurrence has been rising, sales of mosquito repellents have witnessed a robust growth.

While most of the products go stock out to higher sales, shop owners said.

Some 1,712 patients with dengue infection were admitted to different hospitals across the country, including the capital, in the past 24 hours on Thursday, the health directorate said.

Around 15,614 dengue patients were admitted to hospitals and 10 died in July, the sources added.

The dengue virus is carried by female Aedis mosquito which breeds in clean stagnant water and can be fatal unless treated quickly.

In an unprecedented situation, the mosquito-borne dengue disease has gripped entire Bangladesh with 19,513 patients suffering from the fatal disease from January 1 to August 1 this year, health officials said on Wednesday.