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Coronavirus panic buying is clearing shelves of toilet paper, soap, and hand sanitizer

We’re all probably going to face some level of quarantine in the coming weeks as coronavirus spreads across the nation. Some people react to that by downplaying the threat, but others quickly began prepping for the potential end of the world — by purchasing all the toilet paper.

Yes, toilet paper. Although masks and hand sanitizer were the first items to be panic-purchased, consumers quickly cleared the shelves of toilet paper, paper towels, and disinfectant wipes, fearing the potential of being stuck in the house for weeks. Some stores tried to limit the number that each person could buy, but ran out anyway. From Business Insider:

Even though toilet paper doesn’t protect against the novel coronavirus or its symptoms, our desire to keep a steady supply of household essentials, perhaps to regain a sense of control in times of uncertainty, is a natural one.

As stores like Walmart start limiting the number of high-demand items like toilet paper at their physical locations, and more people are encouraged to stay at home, shopping online is increasingly enticing. The only problem — and it’s a big one — is that many popular online stores are also completely out of stock or offering overpriced products from third-party sellers.

The shortage of items deemed to be essential during the coronavirus outbreak has led some enterprising consumers to purchase in bulk so they can flip the products online for significant profits.

For example, the Star reported that a couple in Vancouver purchased about $70,000 worth of disinfectant wipes from multiple Costco locations, and are selling them for as much as four times the original price. They’ve made more than $100,000 so far.

Survivalist prep stores are also seeing an uptick in business. Not from their normal customers, who are the type of people who would already be stocked up before a crisis. In fact, it’s the type of customer who would normally mock preppers. Buzzfeed News reported:

Like Mira Safety, My Patriot Supplies is experiencing extreme demand and long shipping delays. Bansemer estimates that the store has been at about 100 times its normal sales volume since February. It had to open a second food-processing facility this week to meet demand. Like Mira Safety, Bansemer said the bulk of the orders aren’t coming from so-called doomsday preppers.

“We’re a company that deals with emergency preparedness [and] right now we’re working with emergency reactiveness,” he said.

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Prepper Foods and Supplies to Survive Coronavirus Without Leaving the House

This article was originally published by Steven Maxwell at Activist Post. 

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Growing concern over the spread of coronavirus is fueling prepping sprees at big-box retailers like Costco. Costco stores across America were flooded with extra customers bulking up on bottled water, toilet paper, canned food and other prepper foods like 25-lb bags of rice.

The first coronavirus deaths in the United States appears to have triggered panic buying.

Or is it pragmatic prepping? Even if you don’t fear the actual virus, it now seems inevitable that there will be delays in the just-in-time supply chain.

Mass quarantines are resulting in business and factory closures in China. This could cause severe shortages in countless products ranging from medicine to anything that needs plastic or aluminum.

“A recent study determined that 84% of the world’s supply of acetaminophen comes from China and India, with China accounting for nearly two-thirds of the total,” reports LA Times.

What happens if the next shipment of acetaminophen (Tylenol) is delayed for several months? What happens if more medical facilities become quarantined? What happens if more schools are suspended? What happens if air travel is restricted?

Empty supermarket shelves in Italy

Supplies will dry up quickly and people will be bugging in at home. Even my Costco (an hour outside of Seattle where first US COVID-19 deaths occurred) was out of stock of some key items on Monday. Notably, they didn’t have any toilet paper, rice, dried beans, or common canned goods like corn, green beans, and tomato sauce.

In Australia, they’re actually fighting over toilet paper.

Luckily, you can get prepping supplies to survive the coronavirus and avoid crowds and long lines delivered to your home through Amazon. Although many prepping items that people are buying at big box stores are large and heavy, Amazon offers competitive prices and free delivery to your front door with Amazon Prime.

Below is a basic list of the best prepper foods and supplies that you can buy on Amazon without leaving your home:

Prepping Foods on Amazon

The best prepping foods are things you normally eat that are simple to prepare and have a long shelf life.

  1. Breakfast Cereal: Breakfast cereal has a 6-8 month shelf life and can be eaten dry or with milk. Great comfort foods with vitamins and minerals.
  2. Dehydrated hash browns: Dehydrated hash browns can store up to 10 years in ideal conditions and it easy to make with water and a bit of oil.
  3. Pancake mix: Pancake mix is shelf-stable for 12 months and only takes water to prepare. Don’t forget the syrup!
  4. Powdered eggs: Most emergency food breakfast meals include powdered eggs because they taste great and store for up to 10 years!
  5. Oatmeal, hot cereal, and grits: Oatmeal and hot cereals can last 3 years in your pantry and are easy warm satisfying meals that just require water.
  6. Pasta: Dried pasta is an excellent prepper food and will be good to eat for up to 2 years.
  7. Rice: Rice is a prepping staple that can last up to five years in vacuum-sealed conditions.
  8. Tuna and chicken pouches: Storing protein is more challenging, but tuna and chicken can last up to 3 years in your pantry and make tasty additions to your diet.
  9. Peanut butter: Peanut butter is another good protein source with lots of calories. Unopened peanut butter is shelf-stable for up to 9 months. Peanut butter powder lasts up to 5 years.
  10. Beans: Beans are another ultimate prepper food. The shelf life of dried beans is 2 years while the storability of canned beans is up to 5 years.
  11. Nuts: Nuts are a healthy storable snack that is good in your prepping pantry for 12 months and another year if in a fridge or freezer.
  12. Dried fruits: Dried fruits like raisins lat 12 months in a cool pantry and another 12 if refrigerated.
  13. Powdered milk: If milk supplies become limited, powdered milk will come to the rescue. Powdered milk can last up to 10 years in ideal conditions.
  14. Granola bars: Snack bars are an excellent filling treat that store for around 8 months in pantries.
  15. Chicken and beef bouillon: Bouillon broth cubes are wonderful to make soups and for flavoring countless meals. They last up to 2 years on your shelf.
  16. Coffee and Tea: Coffee and tea are imported and could be disrupted by travel restrictions. Whole bean coffee lasts 6 months in the pantry and 2 years in the freezer. Instant coffee lasts up to 20 YEARS!
  17. Sugar and Spices: Most sugar, salt, pepper, and other spices are imported too but also store for years.
  18. Dried meat: Other meats that store well in pantries are beef jerky and bacon crumbles.
  19. Flavored drink mixes: Powdered drink mixes are a great addition when you feel lucky to even have water. They last over 3 years when properly stored.
  20. Ready-to-eat meals: Although emergency food companies are experiencing heavy volume and long delays, you can still find equivalent meals like Campbell’s Ready MealsDinty Moore Beef StewBarilla Penne with SauceCheddar Broccoli Potato SoupChef Boyardee Ravioli, and Rice a Roni cups. These are almost identical to meals in storable emergency foods but are still available in bulk with free Amazon Prime shipping.

Medical Prepping

  1. Tylenol and Advil: With China producing much of the generic versions of acetaminophen and ibuprofen, it’s worth getting some extra on Amazon.
  2. Vitamins C & D & B12: Immune-boosting vitamins like Vitamin CVitamin D, and Vitamin B12 should be on your Amazon shopping list.
  3. Zinc and Magnesium: Zinc and magnesium are also powerful immune boosters.
  4. Imodium: Most people that die from flu-like viruses succumb to dehydration due to rapid loss of fluids during fevers. Anti-diarrhea medicine could be a lifesaver.
  5. Masks and Gloves: Proper masks are not available on Amazon Prime or anywhere else during this coronavirus outbreak. Here are some gloves and face masks that could be useful.
  6. First Aid Kit: Having a good first aid kit is always important but especially during medical emergencies. Or build your own DIY first aid kit.

Prepping Toiletries

  1. Toilet paper: Even the best-selling toilet papers on Amazon are “currently unavailable” but several are still available for free Prime delivery like Quilted Northern and Angel Soft.
  2. Feminine products: Plenty of feminine products available, but for how long?
  3. Soap and shampoo: Good hygiene is essential in a pandemic. Prep with extra bottles of your soaps and shampoos.
  4. Teeth hygiene: Toothpaste, mouthwash, and floss are all available with free shipping.
  5. Wet wipes: Wet wipes for cleaning your skin and wipes for cleaning surfaces are useful right now. Both Clorox and Lysol wipes are “currently unavailable” on Amazon.
  6. Razors: Shaving razors are also useful to stockpile and are very affordable on Amazon.
  7. Deodorant: Make sure you have enough deodorant even if you’re quarantined.
  8. Hand sanitizer: There is currently NO hand sanitizer available for Prime delivery. Here’s how to make your own homemade hand sanitizer.

What other prepping supplies on Amazon do you recommend to survive COVID-19 without leaving your house?