Shoppers in protective gear, screens put up in supermarkets and Tesco limits key items to one per person – The Sun

SHOPPERS are queuing spaced two meters apart outside supermarkets wearing protective gloves and masks, while screens have also been installed at checkouts.

It comes as supermarkets introduce strict new social distancing measures in a bid to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.

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At Waitrose, only one shopper per household is advised to visit stores, while at Boots and Lidl staff are wearing protective visors to reduce contact with others.

And Tesco has reportedly forced shoppers to take just one item each of essentials such as milk, bread and eggs in some Express stores.

The rationing measures have been introduced as shoppers continue to stockpile in the face of coronavirus.

Supermarkets have also launched special opening hours for NHS workers as well as the elderly and vulnerable to help ensure they get the groceries they need.


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Some have also limited online shops to these customers, or stopped taking on new customers altogether.

While elsewhere online delivery slots have sold out months in advance and retailers such as Amazon have struggled with a backlog of orders.

It shows just how much the face of supermarket shopping has changed after Prime Minister Boris Johnson said households should only go outside for food, health reasons, work, or exercise.

Rationing is also now widespread at most supermarkets for the first time since World War II.

And one Tesco store in east London has taken it even further by limiting shoppers to just one item per head, according to the Sunday Times.

The measures are being put into effect at the discretion of individual stores and their circumstances in order to cope with local demand and balance supply.

Tesco refused to rule out the one-item limit becoming more widespread but insisted it was just one shop that had briefly implemented it.

Tesco originally introduced a five-item limit on all products but later cut this to a three-item cap, with the exception of painkillers and loo rolls, which are restricted to two items per customer.

The supermarket has also limited the overall number of items in online orders to 80.

Shoppers shouldn't panic

FIRSTLY, don’t panic. Take a look around your kitchen and fridge and work out if you have enough food to last you for a two-week isolation period.

Make a list of meals you could cook or have and then work out what you would need to buy.

If the UK does enter a more stringent lockdown situation then supermarkets and pharmacies will remain open.

Remember, family and friends will be able to bring you supplies should you not be able to leave the house.

We’ve created a guide on how to stockpile for a two-week isolation.

Tesco says it is finding understanding demand "very difficult right now", calling the recent trend of unnecessary panic buying and stockpiling "a fluid situation".

A Tesco spokesman said: "We are reliant on stores giving updates on what is happening in their local areas and they would be working to understand how best to get products to customers.”

Other supermarkets have introduced similar capping schemes in response to coronavirus stockpiling.

Sainsbury’s has a three-item cap on most products and a two-item limit on long-life milk, loo rolls and soap. Aldi has a four-item cap.

Milk and eggs were among the food items rationed during and after the Second World War when adults were restricted to just one fresh egg a week.

Tesco later added: “To ensure more people have access to everyday essentials, we have introduced a store-wide restriction of 3 items per customer on every product line.

"In a small number of stores where demand is particularly high, our colleagues may need to place further restrictions on some products on a local basis, to ensure everyone can get the things they need.”

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