Data: Grocery out-of-stocks surge tenfold as bulk-buying intensifies

Coronavirus supermarket rationing

Figures from Edge by Ascential demonstrate the unprecedented demand that UK grocers have faced over the past month, as shopper behaviour has moved from top-up shopping to bulk-buying and stockpiling. This has led to high levels of out-of-stocks across ambient grocery, soap and household essentials.

The surge in demand for items began around one month ago, from mid-February, as seen by the increase in average out-of-stocks.

From an average out-of-stock level of 1.3% on February 25, panic buying and the difficulty of restocking shelves amid such intense demand has led to out-of-stock levels across the major grocers reaching 11.6% by March 18. 

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