With infectious disease experts in the U.S. calling for residents to buckle in for winter, shoppers might start to plan on another grocery stock up, but do they really need to?
Edward McLaughlin, a professor of food industry management at Cornell University, was quoted in Yahoo! News saying stores may be better prepared for a second round of pandemic panic-buying. Like shoppers, “grocery stores and food retailers are stockpiling products,” he said.
“Retailers have learned key lessons from the pandemic,” he added. “Shoppers will be loyal even if you don’t have the fancy extras, as long as you have the basics.”
Still, some shoppers may want to be prepared. Cases of the novel coronavirus are spreading in the U.S. and throughout Europe. Colder temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere inhibit the body’s natural suppression tactics, meaning people will likely be more vulnerable to infections as the weather cools.
Earlier this month, Dr. Peter Hotez, the Dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine, told CNN an uptick in COVID-19 cases was inevitable.
“This winter — this November, December, January, February — could be the worst time in our epidemic,” he said. “Get ready to hunker down.”
At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in March, that hunkering down meant fewer trips to the grocery store and carts full of goods from bread flour to toilet paper– arguably the hottest commodity of 2020.