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The second wave of panic purchases began in the USA: what to stock up on

Stockpiling began slowly in the spring, when forward-thinking buyers bought up masks and hand sanitizers. But once the Americans realized the pandemic was serious, they emptied store shelves, from toilet paper to canned soup. What to expect now, when the number of cases of COVID-19 began to rise again, the publication said Yahhoo!.

Photo: Shutterstock

Retailers say they are already seeing signs of panic buying and are hoping to be ready. You should also prepare for this period.

Pay attention to changing habits

Even when people don't panic and empty shelves, the way we eat and shop has changed significantly during the pandemic.

Adults and children spend much more time at home, preparing their own food. According to a September LendingTree poll, the average weekly grocery bill is now $ 190, up 17% from before the pandemic.

Grocery bills jumped, although shoppers were less likely to shop; they just fill their carts to the top on those rare moments when they go out.

Nearly half of the respondents said they spend more on items like toilet paper and paper towels compared to last year.

Another significant increase in spending may provide a clue to the reasons for the shortages of some goods that await us this winter. During the pandemic, the demand for frozen food and canned food rose sharply, leading to a shortage.

Shortage of goods for which there was previously low demand

Buyers and retailers report that several items are already in short supply, including liquid hand soap, sanitizing wipes and canning jars (especially their lids). Some of these commodities have been difficult to find since the first wave and have never recovered.

On the subject: Consequences of the coronavirus: what we will no longer see on grocery store shelves

A second wave of winter could trigger new shortages as Americans spend even more time indoors. In September, in a panel discussion with doctors at Harvard Medical School, White House adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci said Americans should prepare themselves to "get through this fall and winter."

Besides food, you can expect deficiencies:

  • simulators;
  • equipment (gloves and other accessories for outdoor sports);
  • household appliances.
How shops prepare

Panic levels may not be as high this winter as they were in spring, but even minimal attempts to stock up ahead can exacerbate already high consumer demand during the holiday season. Fortunately, stores are preparing for this in advance.

“Grocery stores and food retailers are stockpiling food to prepare for another wave of purchases from COVID-19,” said Edward McLaughlin, a professor of food management at Cornell University.

Typically, stores use demand forecasting and send new orders to suppliers just before the store runs out of inventory, McLaughlin said. But companies were caught off guard when customers began stocking up on goods. The huge surge in demand did not fit the standard forecast - and the shelves were empty.

On the subject: 7 everyday items that are more profitable to buy in a pharmacy rather than in a store

“Retailers have learned key lessons from the pandemic,” McLaughlin added. "Customers will be loyal even if you don't have specific products (skinless chicken legs, lime marinated meat), but you should have the bare essentials (chicken breasts)."

Save on shopping this winter

Retailers are likely to set caps on high-demand items early on, so customers won't be able to buy dozens of packs of toilet paper.

However, it would be wise to stock up on some specialty items as stores focus on maintaining an adequate supply of staples.

If you do decide to make some big purchases, be sure to keep an eye on the promotions so as not to damage your savings too much during the holidays.

You can use free applicationthat allows you to earn rewards by simply taking a photo of a store receipt.

Points will be automatically added to your account, and when you have collected enough points, you can redeem them for gift cards from your favorite stores and brands.

This should ease the challenging holiday shopping season.

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