If you think Evian is expensive, wait a minute, there is one water that is even pricier than the mineral water from the heart of the Alps and that is Air Zam Zam or Zam Zam water. A 1.5 litre of Zam Zam water from Mecca costs RM 20, more than twice the price for a similar 1.5 litre Evian mineral water from France selling at RM 8.60.
The problem with Zam Zam water is that it appeals only to Muslims who believe in the miracle healing power of the water, which originates from a well located a few metres east of the Ka’aba in Mecca. The water was believed to a gift from Allah to Prophet Ismail. The water is also known to have high levels of magnesium salts, fluroide and calcium, according to scientific studies.
“It was reported in Sahih Muslim that the Prophet, said to Abu Dharr, who had stayed near the Ka’bah and its coverings for forty days and nights with no food or drink other than (Zamzam), “How long have you been here?” Abu Dharr said, “I have been here for thirty days and nights.” The Prophet said, “Who has been feeding you?” He said, “I have had nothing but Zamzam water, and I have gotten so fat that I have folds of fat on my stomach. I do not feel any of the tiredness or weakness of hunger and I have not become thin.” The Prophet said, “Verily, it is blessed, it is food that nourishes.” [Narrated by Imam Muslim, 2473]”link
Prophet Muhammad said: “The best water on the face of the earth is the water of Zamzam; it is a kind of food and a healing from sickness.” – See more at: http://www.dailynews.lk/features/zam-zam-water-allah-s-miracle#sthash.l1aFyxty.dpuf
Pilgrims are each allowed 10 litres of Zam Zam water to be taken back to their own country. The water is then distributed among relatives and friends. Due to the popularity of Zam Zam water, a new industry has been created to fulfill the demand for Zam Zam water in Malaysia and Indonesia.
The holy water has become increasingly common, thanks to the tiring efforts of Zam Zam distributors to ship the precious water from Saudi Arabia. Now, Zam Zam water is available in stalls in shopping malls but it has yet to penetrated supermarkets and hypermarkets. It will only be a matter of time that Zam Zam water makes its appearance in the modern trade channel.
The key problem with Zam Zam water is that it is hard to verify its authenticity. It cannot be ruled out that unscrupulous vendors may be using piped water and pass it on as Zam Zam water. Authorities in Indonesia had just uncovered a factory in Central Java in January 2014 where fake Zam Zam water was made using piped water. The factory in Desa Kaliwareng, Batang had been operating for six years.With a market price of Rp 300,0000 (RM 85) for a 10-litre Zam Zam water and Rp 40,000 for a 0.5-litre bottle, the operator must have made a fortune from selling fake Zam Zam water over the years.
There is no official regulation on Zam Zam water, making it is hard to determine the standard and quality of Zam Zam water. Therefore, the industry tends to operate through word-of-mouth and trust. Until authentication is put in place, Zam Zam water will remain a buyer-beware market.