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Heatwave: Aldi struggles to keep drinking water in stock in some shops

Sales of bottled water rise in Belgium due to heatwave - Belgaimage
15:58 09/08/2022

Supermarket chain Aldi is struggling with shortages of drinking water in some of its stores due to a temporary spike in demand as a result of the pending heatwave. 

Belgium will enter Code Orange from Wednesday due to excessive heat, and some families are stocking up on drinking water in anticipation of needing to stay cool. This is despite the fact that tap water in Belgium is fully safe to drink; Flanders has stricter regulations than bottled water.

In the past few days, Aldi has sold 40% more drinking water than usual and in some of their stores, shelves for bottled water are completely empty. 

The rate at which water was bought in some shops was so high that suppliers could no longer keep up, a spokesperson told Belga News Agency. 

According to Aldi, the fact that water is not available in some shops is only a temporary problem. “Due to the high demand, more time is needed for the product to reach us,” a spokesperson said.

“It’s a temporary phenomenon in some shops, and does not apply to all types of water either.”

Grocery chains Albert Heijn, Delhaize and Colruyt have also seen a spike in sales of drinking water, but are not yet experiencing shortages.

“At this moment, we do not have a problem,” a Colruyt spokesperson told De Standaard. 

“We have noticed an increasing demand for drinking water these days because of the hot weather. That’s why our transport teams had to step it up for a while, because out of nowhere there was a sudden high demand for water.”

Delhaize is likewise not yet facing structural water supply problems at the moment. “We know that there will be more demand for water during the summer,” said spokesperson Roel Dekelver. 

“Locally, a shop might have a bit less stock, but that is normally quickly replenished the next day. In general, we were able to supply the shops well, both with our own private label water and that of international brands.”

At Albert Heijn stores, sales of drinking water have increased by up to 30% in recent weeks but there are no broad supply problems yet, though a spokesperson said “individual supermarkets may not have a certain product on the shelf due to the high demand.”

Photo: © Belga/Laurie Dieffembacq

Written by Helen Lyons