UK Coronavirus Raised Alert Sparks Supermarket Panic Buying Frenzy

Supermarkets are once again reporting mass panic buying as the government raised the coronavirus threat alert to level 4 today.

HOME food despatch services from Ocado, Tesco and Sainsbury’s have all warned shoppers that their delivery slots are in increasingly high demand as fears of a second lockdown spark a fresh wave of panic buying. As daily new coronavirus cases hit levels not seen since the height of the pandemic, the UK’s largest supermarkets are once again being hit by a massive influx of home delivery orders.


Ocado told customers that delivery slots were “selling out faster than usual,” advising them to use the “next three days button to see available slots further in advance.” Meanwhile, its larger rival Sainsbury’s said it was “working hard to expand our service” as delivery slots “are still in high demand.”

Tesco also posted a notice on its delivery website from September 19 stating that while they were “releasing slots as and when they become available,” they “are filling up quickly. We ask those who are able to safely come to stores to do so, instead of shopping online, to help us prioritise slots for more vulnerable customers,” it added.

Supermarket Panic Buying

It comes as reports and images emerged on social media over the weekend of empty supermarket shelves as shoppers fearful of an imminent second lockdown return to panic buying. Daily new coronavirus infections in the UK are now averaging around 4,000, figures not seen since May. While no second lockdown has yet been announced, Boris Johnson is understood to be considering a two-week mini lockdown in an effort to stem the spread of the virus.


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Written by

Tony Winterburn

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