Coronavirus: HUL, Patanjali, Godrej Cut Prices of Soaps and Sanitisers

FMCG companies will reduce prices of select hygiene and personal care products by 15 per cent to help the common man amidst the coronavirus outbreak

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In a move to support the fight against spreading coronavirus pandemic, some of the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) majors like Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL), Godrej Consumer and herbal products brand Patanjali have decided to reduce the prices of sanitisers and soaps.

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While HUL has announced a price cut of 15 per cent on select hygiene and personal care products, Haridwar-based Patanjali Ayurveda will reduce prices on aloe vera and haldi-chandan based soaps by 12.5 per cent. Godrej Consumer has decided to hold off price increase for its soap categories that the company had planned many months ago due to increase in price of raw materials, a company official said in a media statement.

“In public interest, HUL is reducing the prices of Lifebuoy sanitizers, Lifebuoy liquid hand wash and Domex floor cleaners by 15 per cent. We are commencing production of these reduced priced products immediately and these will be available in the market in the next few weeks," HUL said in a statement.

HUL has also pledged INR 100 crore to country’s fight against coronavirus. Among various steps, it will distribute two crore Lifebuoy soap pieces to ‘the sections of the society that need it the most’ and partner with medical institutions and provide them free supplies of sanitation and hygiene products.

“In crisis like this, companies have a big role to play. We are working closely with the governments and our partners to ensure that we overcome this global health crisis together," Sanjiv Mehta, chairman and managing director, HUL said in a statement.

Panic Buying Emptying Shelves at Stores

As the positive coronavirus cases increase significantly by the day, consumers are panicking and hoarding on essentials. Keeping in mind the increase in demand, FMCG companies have come forward to reduce prices to help the common man. Patanjali has also decided to slash the prices of cooking oil by 20 per cent.

The government had officially categorised sanitisers and masks as ‘essential commodities’ earlier this month to prevent black marketing and solve shortage of these items, resulting from panic buying. In the same vein, the government also capped price of alcohol used to make sanitizers on Thursday, along with capping prices of sanitizers and surgical mask at INR 100 (200 ml) and INR 10 (3 ply), respectively.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his address to the nation on Thursday urged the citizens to not hoard essentials and be sensitive towards others needs. He assured that steps are being taken by the government to ensure that there is no scarcity of medical essentials as well as groceries.

Confirmed coronavirus cases tally in India stands at 223 as of Friday, with four lives claimed by the deadly virus.