The Daily Star:

Summertime brightens the outlook for beverage business.

Add to the list of positive factors the resumption of political activities and market expansion in suburbs and rural areas.

Sales are rising with processors expecting the market to grow between 15 percent and 20 percent this year, if the economy does not suffer a big blow from the global recession in the second half of 2009.

“People drink more to have a respite from the heat wave. Our supplies were much ahead of the March target. The April scenario was the same,” said Mohammad Ilias who delivers Pepsi products on behalf of his employer Sunflower Distribution.

Besides Pepsi products, including clear drink 7up, beverages such as Coca Cola, RC and Mojo mark rises in demand as the heat wave sweeps the country.

Early last week, temperature in Dhaka hit a 14-year high, while other parts of the country also passed through the blistering heat prompting people to drink in quest of a respite.

“We are struggling to cope with the rising demand every day. Whatever we make goes directly to truck from production. There is no scope for storage,” said an official of Abdul Monem Ltd (AML), Coca Cola’s bottler and franchisee in Bangladesh.

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