Australian supermarkets face supply problems due to Covid-19

Sydney, Australia, Jan 4 (EFE).- Australian supermarkets face supply problems, mainly over fresh and meat products, as a result of the rapid spread of Covid-19 in the country, which on Tuesday reported about 48,000 new infections and four deaths.

The lack of products on supermarket shelves after end of year holiday celebrations is due to logistical problems linked to the large number of Covid-19 infections of truckers and workers, including those in distribution centers.

Sydney and Melbourne, the most populated cities in the country, are the most affected by the irruption of the omicron variant, which has strongly contributed to the doubling of the number of registered cases of Covid-19 in December to exceed 500,000 since the start of the pandemic.

“We have supplies available in our network and our teams and suppliers are doing everything possible to replenish our stores as soon as possible,” a spokesperson for the Woolworths supermarket chain, one of the largest in the country, told Efe in an email.

Australia, which has already experienced a shortage of products such as toilet paper during the pandemic, is experiencing “again a period of uncertainty” due to purchases motivated by fear and the large number of people unable to work due to covid-19, said Amrik Sohal, Director of the Monash University Supply Chain Management Research Unit

“There is a shortage of workers everywhere and the facilities cannot operate at full capacity. We can expect more empty storefronts because we do not know what will happen next week,” the expert told state network ABC.

Australia, which has vaccinated more than 90 percent of its population over 16 and is currently facing problems with the distribution of home antigen tests and has run over the PCR testing clinics, expects infections to increase vertically.

The Australian Government reiterates it does not plan to decree confinements because the country is facing a stage where it is necessary to live with the virus despite claims due to pressure on the health system due to the increase in patients with Covid-19.

However, borders remain closed to tourism and citizens have been allowed to leave the territory since only a couple of months ago, while the reopening plan for foreign students and qualified workers continues. EFE


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