Here Are The Items That Grocery Stores Are Rationing

The coronavirus has sparked different shopping habits among people and stores have had to take matters into their own hands to prevent running out of essential supplies. CNN has reported some grocery stores are holding "elderly hours" to try to keep people at a higher risk safer, and USA Today reports that online retailers like Amazon and eBay have had to prevent price gouging by investigating people who hoarded hand sanitizer to profit from the panic. As stores like Walmart (among others) begin to open later and close earlier, it's only natural that various stores are taking the next step to put limits on how much of some coronavirus-related items each shopper can buy per day.

Things like hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes, and cold- and flu-related products (think Tylenol, cough syrup, decongestant medicine, etc.) are being sold in limited quantities, according to CNN. This should help prevent a tiny number of people from buying all of a store's reserves, which could prevent regular shoppers from being able to buy these necessary products when they can (via Time). 

CNN has also quoted White House Deputy Press Secretary Judd Deere who has stated that the United States has strong supply chains, so hoarding everyday essentials is not necessary — like the infamously disappearing toilet paper, which is not exactly a must-have because of coronavirus. Giant Food Stores, however, have reported shortages and "out-of-stock" on household staples for cleaning and disinfecting.

Where to buy rationed items

Target has limited hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes to six per customer. Shop Rite has limited the same items, along with hand soap and water, to four per shopper. CVS is currently reviewing a policy on rationing sanitizing products too, while Kroger has implemented a five-item limit on sanitation products as well as cold and flu products (via Business Insider).

While other everyday essentials are not necessarily being strictly rationed in the United States, a look at what's happening in Europe could provide a glimpse at what could be ahead. In the United Kingdom, toilet paper is, in fact, being rationed simply to prevent hoarding (via The Guardian). UK Aldi stores have limited all items to just four per customer, while Tesco is allowing each shopper to buy a maximum of five shelf-stable milks and pastas (via Metro). Though Business Insider reported that some countries — the U.S. included — are running out of hand sanitizer, remember that handwashing is more effective for removing all types of germs (via CDC).