This post is by Bernie Carr,
Just when we thought that store shelves were beginning to get replenished, I went to my local grocery store yesterday and found that many shelves were once again empty. The toilet paper shelf was starting to get restocked a few weeks ago, but this week it was empty again. Other sections that were lacking were canned foods and pasta shelves. The meat aisle was also not very plentiful. What’s causing these shortages?
Although the news coverage regarding the coronavirus pandemic is not as ever present as in previous months, COVID-19 is still running rampant. As of this writing, per the CDC’s latest numbers: the U.S. has total cases 2,063,812, with the newest cases numbering 25,468.
We already saw what panic buying does to store shelves. The outbreak continues to threaten the food supply, as meat and dairy processing centers continue to report new cases among employees.
Other Natural disasters
Besides the COVID-19 pandemic, which is a disaster in itself, weather related disasters continue to happen. Hurricane season is upon us. The recent tropical storm Cristobal was enough to cause store shelves to empty out in the Gulf States. As of this writing, wildfires are threatening areas in California, Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico.
Relations with China
The trade war with China had already caused increased prices, in the previous year. The coronavirus pandemic further caused production and shipment slowdowns.
As riots continue to occur in many cities across the country disruptions in deliveries occur as roads get blocked off and traffic flow gets interrupted. Truck deliveries are delayed or interrupted.
In addition, many stores in affected areas get looted or burned. Some examples:
According to Fox29:
Multiple days of looting in Philadelphia’s Germantown neighborhood has forced essential businesses to close.
The part of the city residents have referred to as a “food desert” has been left without access to some of their already few food and drug stores Tuesday morning.
The Fresh Grocer on the 5300 block of Chew Avenue was among the stores that closed its doors, citing concerns for the safety of their employees.
“We can’t open our Fresh Grocer Supermarket. People are coming up crying because they can’t get food anywhere,” Fresh Grocer CEO Pat Burns told FOX 29’s Lauren Johnson. “This was the number one food desert in Philadelphia for years.”
Sadly, as these essential businesses are closed down, residents of those areas will have to travel further away to obtain necessities.
In Minneapolis, according to the StarTribune,:
With Cub, Target, two Aldi stores and many small markets damaged by rioting over the past week, Longfellow and about eight other neighborhoods have nearly become a food desert.
“I consider the loss of these businesses devastating,” said Melanie Majors, executive director of the Longfellow Community Council. “Besides just the food, there’s a lack of retail for diapers, formula, household goods, even clothing.”
Many residents of the area shop lower-priced stores such as Aldi or dollar stores. Two of those dollar stores — including Family Dollar on Lake Street — were destroyed in last week’s looting and violence that arose after George Floyd was killed in Minneapolis police custody.
These incidents of looting and violence are still happening in many cities across the country. Unfortunately for residents of these areas, they will have to travel further away in order to obtain needed groceries and supplies.
Plans to defund police departments
Truck drivers were already working around the clock throughout the coronavirus pandemic, but they are especially concerned about the latest development that several cities across the country are considering defunding police departments.
According to CDL Life News, a site that reports on the trucking industry, truck drivers say they will not deliver to cities that have defunded police departments. They will fear for their safety in areas that don’t have police coverage.
A truck driver was quoted as saying ““For my own safety and security of my customers’ loads, I have already informed my dispatcher that I will refuse all loads to cities that have defunded their police departments.”
If trucks don’t provide deliveries, then store shelves or even gasoline stations do not get restocked.
As we have mentioned in the past, continue to pick up extra supplies every time you go to the store while you are able to find them.
Consider these alternate sources if your store shelves are cleaned out.
Make your fruits and vegetables last longer using these tips.
Learn how to repackage foods for long term food storage. Click on this link for the supplies to get you started. I have been packaging rice, sugar, flour and other staples since 2010 and have since opened some of my stocks. There are as fresh as the day I packed them.
Use these ideas to avoid food storage problems.
Order extra pet food and pet supplies.
Try to have at least a month’s worth of your prescription medications. You can also try ordering your medicines in bulk if your insurance covers the service.
We are an affiliate of Amazon.com, which means we received a small commission if you click through one of our Amazon links when you shop, at totally no cost to you. This helps keep the lights on at the blog. Thanks!
About the author:
Bernie Carr is the founder of Apartment Prepper. She has written several books including the best-selling Prepper’s Pocket Guide, Jake and Miller’s Big Adventure, The Penny-Pinching Prepper and How to Prepare for Most Emergencies on a $50 a Month Budget. Her work appears in sites such as the Allstate Blog and Clark.com, as well as print magazines such as Backwoods Survival Guide and Prepper Survival Guide. She has been featured in national publications such as Fox Business and Popular Mechanics. Learn more about Bernie here.