Shoppers will have noticed that there are a growing number of empty supermarket shelves across Manchester.
A combination of the heatwave, Brexit, and the coronavirus pandemic are being blamed for the shortages.
But just how bad are the empty shelves and food shortages? And what items are out of stock?
The Manchester Evening News went to several supermarkets across Manchester on Thursday, July 22, to find out.
Tesco Express, Whalley Range
Even the smallest of Tesco stores are having problems with stock. The Tesco Express on Withington Road in Whalley Range, in the South of the city, had a number of empty shelves.
The store wasn’t short of anything that you’d associate with panic-buying, like toilet roll or dried pasta. However, there were a few shelves which were completely empty.
This included three shelves that would usually be full of chocolate bars and boxes and two shelves where you would expect to find tea and coffee.
In the refrigerated section, the 6 pint bottles of milk had almost sold out, and there were no fresh flowers available for customers either.
One shopper who the M.E.N. met outside the store said that he’d been struggling to find avocados all week.
“I’ve been in a few times and there’s not been any,“ Luke Alcock said.
A spokesperson from Tesco said: “We have plenty of food, with deliveries arriving at our stores and distribution centres across the UK every day, and overall availability remains good.
“While there is plenty of food for everyone, we are experiencing sporadic disruption from the industry-wide shortage of HGV drivers and an increase in colleagues self-isolating on a precautionary basis.
“This, on top of increased demand, is leading to pockets of temporary low availability across a small number of products, but we’re actively managing this and our colleagues are working hard to get shelves back to fully stocked. “
Sainsbury’s Superstore, Oldham
Shoppers at the Sainsbury’s superstore on Union Street, Oldham, were also left disappointed in their search for certain products.
People heading down the freezer aisles were met with gaping holes on the shelves, as the store was stripped clean of ice creams, lollies, and ice cubes.
One woman had visited the store in hopes of getting her hands on a pack of ice, as the empty shelves across the country had left her worried her home delivery tomorrow may arrive without the freezer staples.
Although some people may be leaving stores without items on their list, most customers across the country won’t face the same fate.
A spokesperson for Sainsbury’s said: “We are working hard to ensure customers can find what they need.
“While we might not always have the exact product a customer is looking for in every store, large quantities of products are being delivered to stores daily and our colleagues are focused on getting them onto the shelves as quickly as they can.”
Asda Hulme Superstore
One of the biggest supermarkets in Manchester was filled to the brim and there were no empty shelves to be seen.
This wasn’t a huge surprise, as it hasn’t been widely reported that Asda has been struggling with stock.
But enjoy this picture of one Asda employee working very hard to remove a 2M social distancing sign from the shop floor.
Shoppers across Greater Manchester have shared their frustrations about not being able to get their hands on their usual supplies.
Karen, on Twitter, said that she struggled to find veg in her local big Tesco last night.
“I managed to get the only bag of salad (there was no other lettuce) and some apples. No aubergines, courgettes, soft fruit, chillies, berries at all.,“ she wrote.
Another Twitter user, from Middleton, said that their local Tesco was short of stock too.
“My local Tesco appears to be running out of food. Lots of empty shelves,“ they said.
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