With the spread of Coronavirus it has become obvious that the pandemic is causing a chaos and people all over the world are getting ready for a forced quarantine as businesses and services are shutting down. Coronavirus stockpiling phenomenon across the globe is a clear evidence that people are not aware what to do and how to deal with the situation. Despite the efforts of government officials to calm down the citizens, the shelves of supermarkets emptied in a matter of days. Where do chaos and hysteria end and where common sense and planning begin?
Currently, people in many countries have to stay at home for several weeks because of the corona virus spread. What do you actually need to have in your home? We all know that our diet should be balanced and healthy but what do we need to do in an emergency situation? The images of empty supermarket shelves in almost any country made people think of possible supply shortages despite that governments and local authorities state that no one has to worry about a shortage of consumer goods in the near future.
Why do we witness coronavirus stockpiling? From a psychological point of you, this makes people feel safe because they actually can do something. On the other hand the restrictions for leaving the homes are a fact in many countries and consumers are trying to be prepared in case the same thing happened in their country.
In almost all European countries schools are running virtually and many companies let their employees work from home. In addition, experts and media continuously advise the population to stay at home and spend as little time outside as possible. The rapid spread of coronavirus disease in Europe and the measures taken by governments suggest that many of us will have to stay home under quarantine or just work at home as a prevention.
We need to understand the fact that social distancing and isolation are intended to slow down and limit the spread of the disease. It may be unpleasant but we can be prepared. Stockpiling is nothing more but food hoarding which is the result of panic. There is no need to fill your pantry cabinets with food that you cannot consume and it is very likely that it will end up in the dustbin. Panic is completely unnecessary because, as the supermarkets also ensure, there is enough food for everyone and that will not change in the coming weeks and months.
You need a checklist that will prepare you and your family to spend a lot of time at home. No one can tell you exact quantities because they will depend on the size of your family. Usually the quarantine lasts for two weeks. In some countries the state of emergency may last for a month or two but we all need to make a difference between hoarding and preparation.
Everyone should prepare for possible self-isolation at home for up to two weeks if they develop coronavirus symptoms but do not require hospital treatment. Toilet paper is the product that sold out first in supermarkets from Australia to the UK. Sounds irrational, doesn’t it? So, how to prepare for coronavirus quarantine? Let’s get real and make a shopping list for 14 days!
Common sense is essential. Do not panic and do not experiment. Stock up food and drinks that you and your family normally use. Pay attention to the best before date. Label the food with no label with the purchase date. Dry food should be kept in cool and dry place. Check the integrity of the packaging. When storing food, also think of special foods – for diabetics, allergy sufferers or babies. Think of your pets, if you have any.
The most important thing is that all food and beverages have a long shelf life. Stock up canned foods, frozen foods and dry products such as pasta are ideal. Frozen vegetables are just as nutritious as fresh ones. Of course, you should keep in mind that in case of a power failure the frozen food will not last long, so buy only the quantities that you can use up in a short time. Dry and canned goods are easy to store and you can use them for many nutritious meals. Make sure you keep the storage instructions by manufacturers.
- Pasta, rice, beans, lentils, otas, etc. and other cereals such as oatmeal
- Sugar, sweetener, salt, flour, instant broth, cocoa powder
- Milk, butter and dairy products
- Еggs (Fresh eggs can only be stored for a limited time)
- Supplies of water, fruit juices and other liquids, about 14 liters per person per week
- Canned meat, soups, cooked legumes in a glass and stews
- Goods for roasting and seasoning, such as oil, salt and pepper
- Coffee and tea
- Long-lasting snacks such as dried fruits, nuts and seeds
- Frozen products for the freezer such as meat, ready meals, poultry, beef and pork
- Frozen peas, carrots, spinach, berries, and the like.
- Avoid fish that can get spoiled if not properly frozen
- Durable vegetables and fruits, as well as such foods that can be kept longer without cooling even in the event of a power failure – potatoes, apples, carrots, onions, cabbage, garlic, oranges, grapefruit, lemons, leek, etc.
- Additional long-lasting foods such as jam, honey and finished products – as you wish, but in commercially available quantities
- Chocolate, alcohol, hard cookies, pretzel sticks and the like.
- Herbs and spices
Bathroom and hygiene
- Toilet paper
- Products for feminine hygiene
- Hand soap, possibly hand disinfectant
- Diapers, baby food, baby wipes and other child’s needs
- Body wash, shampoo, conditioner and skin care, if you need them
- Trash bags
- Household gloves
- Laundry detergent
- First aid kit
- Prescription medications
- Skin disinfectant
- Wound disinfectants
In case of energy failure
- Light source (candles, tea candles, flashlight)
- Lighter, matches
- Emergency radio
- Spare batteries
- Camping stove with fuel
- Fuel for the gas cooker, etc.
- Pet food and treats for pets
- All-purpose cleaner
- Water filter
- Dish soap and sponges
- Kitchen paper
- Disposable plates and cutlery
Of course, this is not an obligatory list. Depending on your needs and eating habits you may choose some type of supplies instead of others. Before going to the supermarket, check what you already have. Keep to simple and quick recipes that do not require exotic and hard-to-find ingredients. In conclusion, we have to say that coronavirus stockpiling should be planned carefully and sensibly!