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Sat Mar 14, 2020, 03:22 PM

Supermarkets Brace for Labor Shortages

The companies that feed America and provide basic staples are bracing for labor shortages as the novel coronavirus pandemic intensifies, which could leave them without enough workers to manufacture, deliver and unpack groceries in stores in the coming months.

As the virus spreads, supermarkets and distribution facilities face a difficult choice: how to keep shelves stocked with essentials while keeping their workers safe.

Already, some chains are rationing products as shelves empty out of pasta, rice and frozen vegetables and anxious customers wait in long lines for toilet paper and bottled water — in scenes similar to those seen before a hurricane, yet this time unfolding on a national scale.

In Washington, D.C., hundreds of people waited in lines that snaked to the back of stores and sometimes onto sidewalks at Walmart, Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s this week, as consumers stocked up on toilet paper, canned tuna and cartons of premade soups. Cases of chicken, beef and frozen vegetables were largely wiped out at a Whole Foods near American University. At the Trader Joe’s in Tampa, the pasta and tomato sauce aisle was empty Friday afternoon, and the salty snacks were depleted (there was still plenty of $3 chardonnay on offer, however).


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Reply Supermarkets Brace for Labor Shortages (Original post)
RandySF Mar 2020 OP
uponit7771 Mar 2020 #1

Response to RandySF (Original post)

Sat Mar 14, 2020, 03:27 PM

1. I don't think they'll be short of labor just short of shoppers. People aren't going to want to

... go to crowded stores now

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