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‘Buy only what you need’

People are being asked to shop normally after the country went into Covid-19 Alert Level 2 on Wednesday.

Customers have seen the return of physical distancing at Pak'nSave Gisborne, with signs reminding them to keep two metres apart. The supermarket is limiting the number of customers allowed in-store.

Increased sanitisation and safety measures are in place, and people have already grown accustomed to the perspex screens at checkout and readily available trolley wipes and hand sanitiser.

“Trade has been relatively steady and we continue to encourage customers to shop normally and only buy what they need,” said Foodstuffs NZ head of corporate affairs, Antoinette Laird.

“If customers do this, it ensures there is plenty of stock to go around for other customers and reduces unnecessary pressure on our supply chain.

Opening hours remain at 7am-8pm.

Countdown stores throughout the country have changed their opening hours to give staff time to re-stock shelves. They will open an hour later, at 8am and close at 9pm, an hour earlier.

To make sure there is plenty for everyone, Countdown has put a limit of one on all packets of masks and a limit of three on the following categories: flour, rice, dry pasta, canned baked beans and spaghetti, UHT milk, frozen vegetables, toilet paper, paper towels, personal wash, hand sanitiser, paracetamol, household cleaner, sanitary products and baby formula. There will also be a limit of six on wine and beer.

Stocks of some items have been selling out at Gisborne supermarkets. Gisborne mum Holly McIlroy shopped at Pak'nSave yesterday morning and said it was heartbreaking to see the empty shelves.

“I think of our kaumatua and lower income families forced to shop outside their budget.

“Mothers with little babies won't have the option of nappies to choose from. We are only a little town so we need to share the kai coming in.

“The flour shelves were empty and also most of the washing powder.”

SELLING OUT: The meat section at Pak'nSave Gisborne has been cleaned out as customers stock up of supplies due to the region going into Covid-19 Alert Level 2, yesterday. Picture supplied