"All these people stockpiling are also guilty of spreading the virus"
Ajit Singh Atwal, former Liberal Democrat Councillor, posted photos on his Twitter account of food that he has come across discarded in bins, which seems to have been bought due to coronavirus panic buying.
The images show fresh food that appears to have been stockpiled by shoppers amidst the panic which has now been dumped because the hoard has most likely gone out of date.
The images of discarded food appear to be in overflowing bins in Derby, where Mr Atwal resides. Bananas, loaves of bread, unopened chicken products and other items are seen in the photos.
These images posted by Mr Atwal have appeared after people in the UK have been told not to panic buy or stockpile and only leave your home to shop for essentials at supermarkets and food shops.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, supermarkets are replenishing stocks as quickly as possible and are offering special shopping times to the elderly and NHS staff. They are also restricting how many items shoppers can buy at one time.
However, if the food shown in Mr Atwal’s photos, is bought by panic buyers and is being discarded in this way; it is certainly not helping the nation at all and is demonstrating very selfish behaviour.
Mr Atwal captioned his Twitter post and wrote:
“To all the people in this great city of ours in Derby, if you have gone out and panic bought like a lot of you have and stacked up your houses with unnecessary items you don’t normally buy or you have bought in more food than you need, then you need to take a good look at yourself.”
to all the people in this great city of ours in Derby, if you have gone out & panic bought like a lot of you have & stacked up your houses with unnecessary items you don’t normally buy or you have bought in more food than you need, then you need to take a good look @ yourself pic.twitter.com/fpYdGBu6M4
— Cllr Ajit Singh Atwal (@AtwalAjit) March 27, 2020
His post on Twitter definitely attracted anger and fury with many reactions. Here are what some people wrote:
@Stephen34184311: ‘What a waste!!! Unbelievable that food could have helped somebody who really needed it self greed at it’s best.’
@queentilli: ‘There should be financial penalties for this kind of thing.’
@Ant_CFC_203: ‘Disgraceful. I hope these people look back and realise they have let themselves and their communities down.’
@leesweetavfc: ‘I see on a day to day basis it’s totally and utterly unbelievable and they should all hang there heads in shame’
@techjunkie68: ‘All these people stockpiling are also guilty of spreading the virus whilst waiting in the queues at the supermarkets! I know this was before the official order for social distancing, but come on, these greedy people have no common sense!’
@VictoriaLaithw1: ‘Unbelievable!! I made a soup out of the veg just about to go off just so I didn’t waste food. So annoying that people are throwing food away!!!’
@LisaFrideborg: ‘WTF. Those bananas aren’t even ripe yet – why throw them out?’
However, not all people were convinced with the authenticity of Mr Atwal’s post and commented accordingly:
@EvaR_Martin: ‘This has to be fake. It has to be staged. Cmon people we can’t be this mad, can we?’
@minxy5: ‘This food says March 1st ?. The bananas are still green. This is NOT wasted food because of panic buying people started stockpiles middle of March?..’
@Orpheus79: ‘This is blatantly fake. The bananas give it away.’
@sarjeantm01: ‘Yes I agree this is shocking but @DerbyCC don’t have green bins like these are you sure these pictures were taken in #Derby’
@derekbirchski: ‘On Wednesday the same photo put up by dustmen in the Staffordshire moorlands?’
Either way, if the images are from Derby or another place, they still show fresh food discarded during very challenging times.
It’s estimated that people in the UK have hoarded food worth £1 billion to date as a result of panic buying, despite the government and food industry assurances that there is still enough food in the supply chain.
The national medical director of NHS England, Stephen Powis accused panic buyers of depriving healthcare staff of food supplied they need. He said: “Frankly we should all be ashamed.”
Tesco is encouraging shoppers who are able to use their stores to use them so that online delivery slots can be freed up for those who a vulnerable and elderly.
Ocado has been challenged with the demand for its services saying it has increased over ten times since the outbreak of COVID-19.
Online outlets which are operational are limiting to one customer per week and some items are restricted to just two per person when ordering.
Thus, it is imperative that panic buying and hoarding food are prohibited, food wastage is minimised and people act sensibly to make sure everyone gets access to food supplies as the nation fights the pandemic of COVID-19.