Woolworths reinstated product limits due to higher demand for items such as painkillers.
On January 13, the supermarket giant imposed a limit of two packs per customer of painkillers and toilet paper, nationwide, in-store and online.
Woolworths said it was a precautionary measure following recent constraints in the food and grocery supply chain and pockets of increased demand in certain categories.
Limits will ensure that more customers have fair access.
Woolworths has imposed purchase limits on rapid antigen kits since it began selling the products last year. Per federal government guidelines, customers are limited to one pack per purchase (these packs may contain one to seven test kits).
“We understand this is an anxious time for our customers,” said Woolworths Stores Manager Jeanette Fenske.
“We will continue to closely monitor product availability in our stores, with stock continuing to be sent to stores daily. Customers will notice gaps on the shelves, but we are doing everything we can to meet demand.
“We encourage everyone to be considerate of other members of the community and to continue to shop in reasonable quantities.
“We would like to thank our customers for their patience and understanding, and ask them to continue to show kindness to our teams who are doing everything possible to support them during this difficult time.”
Woolworths continues to see supply chain challenges affect stock levels due to COVID-19 and high rates of staff absences.
Coles has also imposed temporary packaging limits on certain product categories.
Certain medications (paracetamol, ibuprofen, aspirin) are limited to two units per client.
Limits also apply to toilet paper (one unit per customer), two packages of chicken breasts and thighs from the meat section (six fillets from the deli meats), two packages of minced meat, two packages of sausages and one package of kits rapid antigens.
But shoppers say finding test kits or even fruit, vegetables or meat, especially at the end of the day, is proving difficult.
On the COVID-19 Sutherland Shire Facebook group, people are sharing their shopping experiences.
“I end up going to the fruit and vegetable store, there are plenty of them there,” said one user.
“I had Click and Collect and half of my order was unavailable,” posted another.
Most buyers said they had no trouble getting supplies early in the morning.