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Toilet paper wipe off shelves again as COVID cases shoot past 12M in US

Sun 22 Nov 2020    
| < 1 min read

Toilet paper aisles are emptying again as COVID-19 curfews and shutdowns in the U.S. from California to New York send pandemic-weary shoppers on a new scramble for essentials.

The country recorded its 12th million COVID-19 case on Saturday, even as millions of Americans were expected to travel for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, ignoring warnings from health officials about furthering the spread of the infectious disease.

Walmart on Friday saw “pockets of lower than normal availability” for toilet paper and cleaning supplies in some communities as infections surged unchecked across most of the nation.

As of Friday afternoon, 22 states have imposed restrictions aimed at decreasing spread of the virus – giving rise to a new round of panic buying from shoppers and purchase limits from retailers including Target and Kroger, the nation’s largest supermarket chain.

Shoppers in a half dozen cities around the United States told Reuters that disinfecting wipes were sold out at discount retailers like Walmart and Costco. Other out-of-stocks include paper towels, cleaning wipes, gloves and Spam canned meat.

The bulk-buy hunts are on again in California, where the governor on Thursday ordered a curfew placed on all indoor social gatherings and non-essential activities outside the home across most of the state. The Costco stores in Fresno and Los Angeles saw shelves wiped clean of toilet paper.

Over the last several months, retailers have had to make major, costly changes to their supply chains to meet unexpected surges in demand.

In a response to a tweet complaining about sold out toilet paper and paper towels, Walmart’s Sam’s Club said, “We’re working to replenish these items as fast as humanly possible.”

[Sourced from Agencies]