COVID-19: Calls for people not to stockpile fall on deaf ears as Waterford supermarket shelves empty
Waterford people are being urged not to stockpile items or panic buy in the aftermath of the emergency measures to combat the spread of coronavirus announced by Taoiseach Leo Varadkar this morning.
However, this advice seems to have been largely ignored with massive queues forming in supermarkets and shelves being cleared of what the public perceive to be essential items.
At a press briefing today, the Tánaiste, Simon Coveney, and Enterprise Minister Heather Humphreys appealed for calm and assured the public there will be no issues in terms of the supply of goods over the coming weeks.
Minister Humphreys said asked people to refrain from stockpiling as it may prevent those most in need getting access to essential provisions.
“If people go out and buy products that they don’t need to stockpile they are going to cause a problem. There is no need to do that,” said the minister.
She also wanted to quell fears over the supply of food and essential items.
She told the briefing she has met with retailers and distributors who “have assured me that there is sufficient (strength) in the supply chain”. She added that one particular distributor “said very clearly to me that there is sufficient supply in the system”.
Tánaiste Simon Coveney re-inforced the point, adding: “The food industry and retail industry has given reassurance that they have supply chains that are robust and can continue to supply shops and shelves.”
However, many people ignored the advice. This evening social media was awash with photos and videos of huge supermarket queues with trolleys full of food and supplies.
There have even been reports of some supermarkets shutting their doors for a period over the afternoon as they struggle to cope with large groups of shoppers descending on their stores.