The coronavirus appeared in Italy a few days ago. Since then, tests revealed contamination in two neighbouring countries, Austria and Croatia as well. In Hungary, no infection has been registered so far. Still, panic has increased significantly compared to the situation a few weeks ago. As a result, not only hand sanitisers, but several food products are also in short supply by now.
According to Index, supermarkets are running out of masks and disinfectants due to the approaching coronavirus. Furthermore, canned food cannot be found on the shelves either.
According to a clerk at a drugstore, shortages can be experienced nationwide. “Panic broke out a few days ago; since then, we run out of hand sanitisers every half-hour, they are bought half a dozen”. He also added that real panic began after the Austrian and Italian cases. In the past, people were selecting from the products, but now, they buy what is left on the shelves.
However, disinfectant is not the only product in short supply. Huge shortage is experienced in the case of canned and preserved foods, yeast and milk as well. Larger supermarkets are more affected than smaller stores.
As Hungarian news portal NlCafe reports, according to experts, coronavirus is already in Hungary. Therefore, the majority of dry goods, such as rice, pasta, peas, lentils, canned food, crackers, and chips are in short supply. These food products are suggested to be accumulated at home if the virus situation becomes so critical that people cannot leave their homes for two or more weeks.
According to György Vámos, Secretary-General of the Association of Commerce, “There is no reason to panic; in the case of online delivery, it is normal that we have to wait a few days, while stores have sufficient quantities,” reported Portfolio.
He also added that, concerning supply, no difficulties can be expected in the future. There will be enough food products in the shops. “There might be some cases when shops run out of commodities, but the situation does not become generalised.”
György Vámos also highlighted that the current buying activity occurs many times, for example, at Easter or Christmas. Therefore, experts do not expect major problems. “Supply chains might have difficulties due to coronavirus, but domestic stores have several sources of supply,” said the expert, adding that the majority of products are shipped from domestic producers, where production continues smoothly.
Source: index.hu; nlc.hu; portfolio.hu