Walmart's CEO Says You Should Stop Stockpiling Foods and Supplies
Walmart CEO Doug McMillon appeared on NBC's TODAY show Friday morning and discussed how the national retail giant has been dealing with a surge in shopping amid the coronavirus pandemic. With a sharp rise in grocery shopping as restaurants have effectively been shut down, Walmart has been at the center of a number of pandemic related stories, and its workers are seeing firsthand how so many Americans are adapting their shopping habits to life in lockdown.
Anchor Savannah Guthrie asked about shopping trends he is seeing in this strange time, and McMillon explained that in the last five days alone, Walmart has "sold enough toilet paper for every American to have their own roll." He followed by asking viewers directly to no longer purchase groceries as if they were building a stockpile but instead should buy on a week-to-week basis. "It would be helpful for everyone," he explained.
Watch the clip below:
"In the last five days, we've sold enough toilet paper for every American to have their own roll. … If everyone can just manage and buy week-to-week rather than stocking up at this point, it would be helpful for everybody." –@Walmart CEO Doug McMillon pic.twitter.com/N6B70Wyw2R
— TODAY (@TODAYshow) April 10, 2020
McMillon made clear that the supply-chain of items in and out of his stores was strong—and their grocery supplies are strong—but he did reveal that hand sanitizer was harder to come by.
Walmart recently announced new shopping policies designed to protect both shoppers and its associates from the deadly COVID-19 contagion. This included metered entrance into the store so as to limit crowd size, and a one-way path for shoppers to embrace social distancing. Two Walmart workers at an Illinois location recently succumbed to the coronavirus leading to a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the worker's estate.
Grocery stores have never been a more essential part of daily life than they are during this stay-at-home pandemic, and the hoarding of toilet paper—which has often been derided in the press—appears to continue. Let's hope that the Walmart CEO's exhortation of discretion on grocery shopping is heeded. After all, we are all in this together. And for some expert advice on navigating your supermarket, read these 7 Tips for Safe Grocery Shopping Amid Coronavirus Concerns.