Worried shoppers stock up on supplies leaving store shelves bare

Empty store shelves

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Here we go again. As COVID-19 numbers continue to rise across the nation, consumers are rushing to buy hand sanitizer, wipes and even toilet paper.

It’s similar to the demand we saw when the pandemic first started back in March.

Who could forget the empty shelves and those long lines at the store? And now with a new COVID-19 surge, we may be on the verge of another wave of shortages and panic buying.

Nancy Dennis with the Alabama Retail Association said shoppers are stocking up on necessities because they are afraid stores will run out.

Some popular grocery chains are bringing back limits on toilet tissue, paper towels and cleaning supplies, while some local stores like Target have been out of paper products for weeks.

But Dennis said it won’t be like last time when companies were caught off guard by the spike in demand and inventory levels were too low.

“There’s plenty of product in the…product, it’s just not at the stores at this particular time and they will get it in. It’s the same things that happened, but maybe not to the degree that happened earlier. Consumers need to just buy what you need for your family, and if you’ll do that, there should be product there when you need it,” Dennis said.

She added that there is no need to hoard items because in most cases, stores will restock items as soon as they become available, which is usually within in a couple of days.

Copyright 2020 WBRC. All rights reserved.