As the novel coronavirus continues to spread, people are bulk-buying and stock-piling essentials like food, toilet paper, and baby formula.
Over the weekend, mother of four Lauren Whitney posted a TikTok video revealing the devastating impact of panic-buying.
Discouraged and upset, the Utah mom filmed her reaction.
Per Yahoo, Whitney, who works part-time at a movie theater to help subsidize her family’s income, said that for her family, she doesn’t have the opportunity to bulk buy like some.
“There’s so many people out there like myself that we, we don’t get paid very much,” she explained, adding that her husband is ex-military and a full-time student. “So, you know, we’re low income families and so it’s hard for us to be able to just go out and buy a large amount of things at one time.”
“When we do have the funds to be able to go purchase things and it’s not there for us to buy, it’s very frustrating,” Whitney said. “So those people that are buying in bulk or that are clearing the shelves make it harder for those of us that either are low income or only get paid every two weeks or even once a month.”
Panic buying refers to the phenomenon when consumers buy unusually large amounts of a product in anticipation of, or after, a disaster or perceived disaster, or in anticipation of a large price increase or shortage.
On Sunday, the National Retail Federation and the Retail Industry Leaders Association urged shoppers to restrain themselves from hoarding, asking that if they didn’t need an item in the next two weeks to leave it for someone else who does.
“Hoarding and stockpiling creates unnecessary gaps between the time that someone who truly needs a product can find it back on retailers’ shelves,” they said in a statement. “This is particularly important for our most vulnerable neighbors — the elderly and those who are struggling with other health issues.”