Tesco follows Morrisons by rationing items amid panic-buying fears

25 September 2020, 16:34 | Updated: 26 September 2020, 02:09

Some toilet roll shelves have been stripped in recent days
Some toilet roll shelves have been stripped in recent days. Picture: PA

By Ewan Somerville

Tesco has reimposed rationing on toilet rolls after panic buying returned amid fears over Britain's second wave of coronavirus.

The supermarket giant is attempting to stop people from bulk-buying essentials including toilet rolls, flour, pasta and anti-bacterial wipes, with customers told they can purchase a maximum of three of each item.

There are additional limits for a small number of products online, such as rice and canned vegetables.

Some stores have had scenes resembling the bare shelves in March as Brits hoarded items ahead of the first shutdown. 

Tesco said the limits were to "ensure that everyone can keep buying what they need".

"We have good availability, with plenty of stock to go round, and we would encourage our customers to shop as normal," it said.

Read more: Brits should be 'ashamed' of panic buying, says NHS chief

Read more: Women brawl over last packet of toilet roll

Tesco and Morrisons have introduced rationing on some items
Tesco and Morrisons have introduced rationing on some items. Picture: PA

Rival Morrisons also introduced a three-item limit on products including toilet roll and disinfectant earlier this week. 

Both Tesco and Morrisons, as well as Asda, Waitrose and Iceland all said stocks were plentiful and urged shoppers to buy responsibly.

Supermarket bosses insisted the new coronavirus rules, including the “rule of six”, pub curfews and bans on households mixing in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland had not triggered any panic-buying comparable to the spring. 

The British Retail Consortium said supply chains were healthy and urged consumers to "shop as you normally would".