Booths introduces shopping hour for elderly and vulnerable as it battles with 'unprecedented demand'

Booths bosses urge shoppers to stop panic buying as supermarkets struggle with "unprecedented demand" amid virus outbreak.

Wednesday, 18th March 2020, 9:23 am
Booths is urging people not to bulk buy and to avoid using its stores in the morning to allow older shoppers to buy supplies

The supermarket firm, based in Preston, has pleaded with customers to be considerate shoppers and "buy only what you and your family need".

The supermarket has introduced a 90 minute shopping window for elderly and vulnerable customers each weekday morning.

It said the 90 minute window will not be enforced, but it is urging people to avoid shopping at its stores between 9.30am and 11am each morning.

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The move will allow vulnerable and elderly customers to buy what they need each day before stock runs out.

"We'd like to take a moment to ask for your help to protect our communities," said a spokesman.

"We're introducing a priority shopping time for the elderly and vulnerable.

"We'd like to encourage you to shop outside of 9.30am - 11am where possible, to allow our vulnerable and elderly customers time to shop.

"Booths appreciate the support of our customers as we cope with the unprecedented demand."

It has placed limits on a number of essential items, including soaps and sanitisers, cleaning products, medicines and toilet paper.

"Please also buy only what you and your family need," the spokesman added.

"If we all do this, then we can make sure we have enough for everyone."

The supermarket is also encouraging people to help out vulnerable neighbours with their shopping needs.

"Local communities are important, and you might ask friends and neighbours if they need help with their shopping," added the spokesman.

"Sharing the shopping will help the vulnerable to stay well."

It follows some Iceland stores which will open one hour early to allow older shoppers to buy food and supplies before stocks run out.

Iceland said it was not a company policy, but it was allowing individual stores to decide how best to meet the needs of shoppers in their local areas.