Brits WILL have enough food and ministers will take action if ‘irresponsible’ people continue to stockpile, Hancock vows

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BRITS will have enough food and ministers stand ready to stop irresponsible people from stockpiling, Matt Hancock said today.

The Health Secretary insisted that Britain will have enough food to keep going through the coronavirus crisis.

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Brits will have enough food, the Health Secretary said today
The death toll in the UK has reached 21

He urged people to “behave responsibly” and stop taking home as many goods as they could – as it was stopping others from getting vital access.

The UK death toll today went from 11 to 21 and there are 1,140 positive cases for the disease.

Mr Hancock told Sky’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday: “We are confident [people will have enough food].

“We will work with supermarkets to make sure that people get enough.

“People have got to behave responsibly.

“The supermarkets are right to call on people to be responsible and consider the impact that their stocking up might have on others.

“We stand ready to take further measures if necessary.”

An emergency COBRA will be held again tomorrow, where more measures will be considered.

And the Environment Secretary will meet with supermarkets to discuss their response.

It comes after supermarkets across the country were pictured with their shelves completely empty.

One shopper claimed he was mugged for his loo roll after leaving shops yesterday, the MailOnline reported.

Shops have already started begging people to stop panic buying or stock will run out.

Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons reported empty shelves. A Costco outlet in Chingford, North East London, was forced to shut and call police after a stampede.

Online sales also went into meltdown, with delivery slots filled until April.

Ocado was forced to block orders from new customers.

Older folk unfamiliar with stocking up online and less able to join the queues were most at risk, it was said.

Food retail expert Clive Black warned: “Online will struggle to replicate the supply from supermarkets.

“There aren’t enough store pickers, delivery vans or capacity. Tesco has the biggest share of the online food market, with 40 per cent, but clearly there’s not enough slots.” Another senior retail source said: “Panic buying is the biggest problem, because it warps stock control.

Wood Green, London, UK. 14th March 2020. Coronavirus: people queue to buy toilet paper at a Savers store in Wood Green, north London. Credit: Matthew Chattle/Alamy Live News
People queue to buy toilet paper outside a Savers store in Wood Green

“Normal buying behaviour isn’t one person clearing an aisle of toilet roll. There isn’t an issue with supply.”

Aside from supermarkets, millions Brits chose to stay home yesterday leaving town and city centres ghostly quiet and Tube stations almost empty.

panic buying Tesco
Shoppers left a ‘staggering’ trail of destruction in a north London Tesco

Shoppers are stripping shelves