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Toilet Paper Shortage 2.0? – Lesson


toilet paper covid GettyImages-1220515511

(Photo by: Jeffrey Greenberg/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

Will there be enough to go around, or will Americans have to find something else to use in the bathroom soon?

It has been nearly two years since one of the strangest events in modern times. For about two weeks, Americans and people in countries around the world flooded every gas station, residence, warehouse, farmhouse, henhouse, outhouse, and doghouse in a hunt for toilet paper, grabbing any last sheet they could find. The result was a shortage of the bathroom product, as stores sold out. Some people had big stockpiles of toilet paper, and others were left without any at all.

The COVID pandemic has caused all kinds of effects across the globe, and not all of them are to do with health. Some effects are a shortage of products, delivery delays, and prices going up. We also saw the rise of “panic buying,” where people start buying supplies suddenly because they are worried about an emergency.

Now, some companies are warning the U.S. might be on the brink of another toilet paper shortage. Could it happen again?

costco GettyImages-1232720275

(Xinhua/Ting Shen via Getty Images)

After business froze to stop COVID, the world’s marketplace is now in a unique position: Everyone is demanding everything at once, from coffee to copper. This has resulted in high prices for many popular goods at the neighborhood grocery store.

The supermarket chain Costco may be sending signals that toilet paper could again turn into a scarce product and become as valuable as gold. Costco revealed that it will be limiting some key items in its stores for now in case coronavirus cases go up in winter and people start buying things in panic. This means shoppers will be competing for things like toilet paper, cleaning products, and bottled water.

The store has also been having problems getting products. Richard A. Galanti, Costco’s chief financial officer, explained that supplies had been impacted by a few things, including problems with transport. “A year ago, there was a shortage of merchandise. Now they’ve got plenty of merchandise, but there’s two- or three-week delays on getting it delivered,” said Galanti, adding that Costco is “ordering as much as we can and getting it in earlier.”

nike shoe factory GettyImages-175063992

(Photo by Yvan Cohen/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Meanwhile, sportswear company Nike is saying the brand’s shoes could be in short supply. The company’s factories in Vietnam and Indonesia were forced to shut due to COVID lockdowns, causing them to be weeks behind normal production. It is also taking longer to transport the products to the U.S.

From sport shoes to some KFC chicken products, many items might not be found on store shelves over the coming months. Business experts are saying items could be in short supply for the next 18 months.

Buying things in a panic can make shortages worse, so staying calm is one way to help the problem.

So, for now, Americans are wondering: Will there be enough toilet paper to go around, or will they have to find something else to use in the bathroom?