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Coronavirus essential shopping

(77 Posts)
Mgby1 Mon 06-Apr-20 08:07:06

Really frustrated with what people would consider essentials. I am trying to keep my family as safe as I can (only going out to work, children only playing in garden). Working in a shop it's really pissing me off that people think they can stroll around on their phones taking their time whilst people are queuing outside. Wouldn't bother me so much if they are actually coming in for essential items but adults are coming in for a bar of chocolate! It's just ridiculous and I dont think we should be putting ourselves at risk cos of some stupid people. Any other people in retail that refuse to sell non essentials? Xx

OP’s posts: |
midgebabe Mon 06-Apr-20 08:15:28

Just a chocolate bar? Really?

PlywoodPlank Mon 06-Apr-20 08:18:02

People are queueing ages to get into a shop, then buying one chocolate bar? What sort of a shop do you work in?

Patterjack Mon 06-Apr-20 08:20:19

I queued for an hour to get in to asda on Friday, doing that for a bar of chocolate would be beyond stupid.

OhNoNoNoNotThatOne Mon 06-Apr-20 08:23:44

I doubt they're buying just a single chocolate bar. I know being cooped up at home nearly all day is getting frustrating and we're only 2 weeksin, but I wouldn't and I don't know anyone who would want to risk standing in a queue for hours to get in a shop and buy a chocolate bar..

Mgby1 Mon 06-Apr-20 08:24:07

Yes really a bar of chocolate. Had to stop myself from saying something. It's a smaller store not a supermarket so not huge queues outside but still theres always a small queue. Also people coming in to cash their scratch cards. Fair enough if they need the cash but they're just swapping for more scratch cards.

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Teacher12345 Mon 06-Apr-20 08:24:09

The local shop near me have said if you go in for what they deem, non-essential, they will ask you to leae. Sounds sensible to me.

FOJN Mon 06-Apr-20 08:25:22

I agree that popping in for a bar of chocolate is not in the spirit of the guidance to minimise shopping trips but I'm am getting very frustrated with people expressing the opinion that we can only shop for "essential items".
Essential for what? Good health? Mental well-being? Survival?

The word essential only appears in the guidance in relation to travel. We are allowed to shop for basic necessities which includes food. Commenting on what's in people's shopping trolleys is policing their diet not their compliance.

It's also worth remembering that whilst some retailers are still permitted to trade we need people to buy from them to put money into the economy which is currently is free fall.

Mgby1 Mon 06-Apr-20 08:27:54

There was a paramedic yesterday and my colleague actually said to him quietly 'could you have a word with these people that are buying non essentials and you are risking your life'. The man behind him actually looked embarrassed and added a pint of milk to his chocolate!

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forkfun Mon 06-Apr-20 08:28:34

FOJN, well said.

Mgby1 Mon 06-Apr-20 08:29:50

@Teacher12345 totally agree with that

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Knocksomesense Mon 06-Apr-20 08:30:20

It's frustrating but I will say I am saving loads by not popping to the shops! A good habit moving forward

yikesanotherbooboo Mon 06-Apr-20 08:37:51

OP I understand your frustration when you are having to serve customers all day and some of them seem to be being casual about how essential their journeys are. Most people are doing their best; shopping less frequently, mixing less, respecting distances etc and this is the point to reduce the number of personal contacts. It isn't a crime to only buy chocolate but clearly it would be hard to justify a journey as being essential to do so.

Notso Mon 06-Apr-20 08:40:14

The local shop near me have said if you go in for what they deem, non-essential, they will ask you to leae. Sounds sensible to me.

Surely they should just stop selling the items they deem to be not essential. Although if their anything like those suggested by various MN posters they would have empty shelves.

Bubblemonkey Mon 06-Apr-20 08:46:20

I went shopping yesterday for snacks & bits. Not essential? The boyfriends an intensive care nurse.. he doesn’t really have the time to actually sit down & eat at work. I’d have set anyone straight who found the need to question it, too.

Teacher12345 Mon 06-Apr-20 08:48:09

@Notso it is a farm shop attached to a garden centre. It has closed the garden centre bit and reduced hours to 9-12 only each day. IF you are going in for fruit, milk and bread and happen to pick up some chocolate, then thats fine. If you left your house to pop in for a can of pop, then its obviously not okay.
They are a small independant business and have been pretty reasonable compared to companies like sports direct who tried to stay open.

FOJN Mon 06-Apr-20 08:48:38

Surely they should just stop selling the items they deem to be not essential. Although if their anything like those suggested by various MN posters they would have empty shelves.

Quite. It's really quite frightening how many people have fundamentally misunderstood the principles and purpose of the guidance. If this attitude is as widespread as it seems to be then we are screwed.

majesticallyawkward Mon 06-Apr-20 08:48:37

Who decides what is essential? Surely 'food' covers any food the shop that has remained open sells, if a local shop started refusing to sell items because they had arbitrarily deemed it non-essential they would loose considerable business now and in the future.

While I agree pooping out for a single bar of chocolate or an ice cream isn't an essential journey, buying snacks or treats as part of your shop isn't an issue and shops should not be taking it upon themselves to police diets.

For example, I am going for items we are low on today- milk, bread, fruit, cereal, ham and cheese being the staples in our house but will also no doubt get some treat items, that's not an issue. But the person I saw on fb yesterday who walked her 3 children to a corner shop, waited in a que with them to all go in and buy ice creams (and only ice creams) and claim it was exercise was unnecessary, but again not truly against guidelines because they walked so it exercise and they bought food.

Reginabambina Mon 06-Apr-20 08:54:40

How do you know that they haven’t come in looking for something else which you didn’t have and decided to pick up a chocolate bar seeing as they were there?

Mgby1 Mon 06-Apr-20 08:56:56

this is exactly what I mean I have no problem with people coming in and buying sweets and choc with their shopping but we also have families coming in for just ice lollies etc. Its the point of people just popping in for a scratch card or sweets that's annoying cos for me that's not essential. Sorry I know people may think I'm wrong and I'm not trying to police what people buy but it should be made clear what essential means

OP’s posts: |
Mgby1 Mon 06-Apr-20 08:57:56

Because they either go straight to the sweet counter or the till for their scratch cards

OP’s posts: |
FOJN Mon 06-Apr-20 09:03:30

We are to avoid non-essential journeys. There is no list of "essential" items we are permitted to purchase from retailers that are still trading. If you disapprove you can, as someone suggested, remove all items you deem "non essential" from sale. Otherwise you are just assuming an unnecessary policing role.
I sympathise with your point of view about people popping in for treat items but can't see how you can practically and consistently regulate this.

ShanghaiDiva Mon 06-Apr-20 09:04:23

We are supposed to be only making essential trips to the shop/supermarket. What we put in our trolleys is irrelevant.
The op is right to be frustrated: going out to buy one bar of chocolate is not an essential trip.
Buying chocolate, sweets etc as part of your weekly shop is fine.

pjmask Mon 06-Apr-20 09:08:45

* I'm not trying to police what people buy but it should be made clear what essential means*

Yes op, it needs to be made clear to you.


ifonly4 Mon 06-Apr-20 09:09:21

I work in a shop, where we've got the pharmacy, healthcare and baby sections only open. If staff have time, we can go and get specific items from other parts of the store for customers. A lady came in wanting a pink or purple hair dye for her DD. I chose two options for her, and she asked me to go and get more. Customer service is meant to be our priority, so I really had to bite my tongue. It's really not essential. I was in the deepest part of the store so she'd had to walk past others needing genuine healthcare items, then had to speak to me twice. We do it because it's our job and some people genuinely need items, but none of us are comfortable being in work.

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