Shoppers have noted that a supermarket staple is currently very hard to find, prompting Australian retailers to issue an urgent warning.
First it was the toilet paper, then the lettuce; now another household staple is in short supply.
Australian retailers are reporting a national tissue shortage as a result of the monster flu season sweeping the country.
Influenza cases have skyrocketed since we entered our first winter season after Covid restrictions were lifted.
Rising numbers have prompted experts to issue warnings of “a flu season like no other” after two of the mildest seasons on record, and it also appears Australians are struggling for cold and flu essentials.
Frustrated shoppers took to social media to complain about a lack of tissues in supermarkets, prompting supermarkets to reassure customers and blame ongoing supply chain problems made worse as a result of the pandemic.
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Woolworths told news.com.au it was working “closely with suppliers” in a bid to correct the problem.
“Given the recent cold snap and early start to flu season, there is a high demand for a variety of medicinal and paper products, including cold and flu tablets, throat lozenges and disposable tissues,” he said. the spokesperson.
“While customers may find that availability of some of their preferred brands may be limited, we continue to offer a wide range of alternatives in these ranges.”
Coles is experiencing a similar shortage, explaining that it is an industry-wide problem affecting Australia.
“Customers may note that some stores may not have their usual facial tissue brands in stock at the moment,” a spokesperson told news.com.au.
“We want to assure customers that there will be enough stock to see them through this flu season.
“We encourage shoppers to be flexible if products they would normally buy are not available.”
In addition to tissues, shoppers report shortages of other cold and flu products, including acetaminophen and lozenges.
News.com.au understands that Aldi is also affected.
Products to survive cold and flu season aren’t the only shopping staples in short supply right now, as recent flooding in Queensland and New South Wales wiped out lettuce crops, pushing prices up to $12 for a single head.
Earlier this week, experts warned that flu season could have potentially “life-threatening” consequences, with the Australian Influenza Surveillance Report revealing that young Australians are most at risk.
Flu season began earlier this year, with illness increasing a month before the seasonal reporting period began.
So far this year, 87,989 cases of influenza have been reported to the National Reportable Disease Surveillance System in Australia. More than 54 percent of those flu cases were diagnosed in the last two weeks.
For the past two months, the number of confirmed flu cases per week exceeded the five-year average.
According to the report issued by the Department of Health, 733 people have been hospitalized with the flu since April.