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Missing items from your shopping list? Blame the pandemic

Published: Sep. 22, 2021 at 6:27 PM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) -It’s likely happened to you on a recent trip to the supermarket. That item you’re used to buying, a favorite brand or flavor is missing or in short supply. Now that you think about it, it’s been harder to find lately.

It’s not your imagination nor the store’s fault. Like much else these days we can blame it on the pandemic and--to be honest--our reaction to it. Remember when finding a package of toilet paper or disinfectant counted as a small victory, a real find? And when we found those items we bought as many as we could?

We did the same when buying a lot of things. Some scolds called it panic buying. We called it being prepared. Well, we figuratively emptied the shelves and the warehouses.

“People basically stocked up for a year and a half in six months,” says Reno public relations man and spokesman for Scolari’s Markets. “So we got behind the eight ball.”

So, we drew down the inventory on a variety of items and now the market is playing catch up. But the pandemic is complicating things on that end as well.

This may help explain: Cargo ships, a number of them sitting outside L-A harbor. It’s likely that bottle of wine or tropical fruit or condiment is sitting out there waiting to be unloaded.

“They can’t unload the ships because there’s no labor to unload them. there’s no dockworkers. There’s a labor shortage everywhere,” says Minor. “There’s no warehouse people to handle the product.”

So, along with computer chips, bicycle parts, cars and a whole list of other products, the items on your supermarket shopping list will continue occasionally to be in limited supply for a little while yet.

“I think it’s going to take a few months to catch up. I think you can find what you need if you look hard enough, but supplies are low.”

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