Empty shelves at the bakery at Morrisons in Dereham on Thursday night. They were fully restocked the following morning.

Shopping update: Supermarkets reassure shoppers stocking up before weekend snow

Friday, January 18, 2013
3.45 PM

Supermarkets have moved to reassure customers who are stocking up on provisions ahead of poor weather forecast to continue throughout today and the weekend.

Customers had reported shortages of basics such as milk, bread and fruit and vegetables in some shops last night, and stores have been busy during the day.

A spokesman for Morrisons said that nationally bread and milk sales had increased by 10-20pc, with demand for ingredients like stewing beef used for traditional winter foods up by 22pc.

He said: “We are certainly not running short across our network. We have checked with our stores and supply chains this morning and we are not seeing any shortages.

“We are seeing a bulge in sales of certain products but it is not panic buying, but people stocking up ahead of what’s clearly going to be a couple of wintery days.”

A spokesman for Tesco said its supply chain was flexible enough to top up any stocks that were running low.

She said: “Our stores have been busy with customers preparing for the bad weather, as they stock up on essentials such as bread and milk.

“Generally, availability is good across our stores. Our colleagues are working hard to serve our customers quickly and efficiently, and regular deliveries are planned so that we can re-stock products for our customers.”

A spokesman for the Anglian Co-operative said no problems had been reported at its stores.

Earlier, Charlotte Doughty said: “I went to Waitrose Swaffham yesterday and it was like Christmas, so busy. Not a nice experience.”

Richard Willner said: “At 6pm last night there was no bread or milk in Mulbarton Co-op. They were getting a delivery but I’ve never seen that before in there. I guess some of it will be down to late deliveries because of road problems.”

Ali Best said Morrisons in Dereham had run out of bread, potatoes, fruit and veg by 5pm last night, although it still had plenty of wine left.

The shelves were fully restocked this morning, although some customers in the aisles were discussing whether to stock up on food ahead of the bad weather forecast for tonight and the weekend.

Supplies of carrots, potatoes and onions on shelves at the Co-op in the town appeared to be low this morning, although fruit and veg stalls at the morning market were fully stocked.

Have you been stocking up? Have you seen panic buying? Send your photos and stories to martin.george@archant.co.uk