No need to hoard food, there are enough supplies: Japan experts
Japan Times -- Mar 31
There is no need for the public to panic buy and hoard food even if the government declares a state of emergency as a result of novel coronavirus, retail industry and other experts said.

Japan has an ample food stocks, and purchasing such supplies will not be restricted, according to the experts.

At a news conference Wednesday, Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike asked the capital’s residents to stay home and avoid nonessential outings, warning that a lockdown of Tokyo may become necessary if the virus keeps spreading.

Following the announcement, Tokyoites rushed to retail outlets to stock up. Many food shelves were emptied in grocery stores and elsewhere.

Japan’s rice stockpile is large enough to meet six months of national demand, while its wheat stockpile is equivalent to more than two months of demand, according to the agriculture ministry.

Food shortages at stores are temporary since production, distribution and imports have not stopped, the ministry said.

The COVID-19 crisis “does not increase the amounts of food we eat,” a ministry official said, adding that there is no need to buy more than is necessary.

Shopping in crowded stores “increase infection risks,” said social psychologist Naoya Sekiya, associate professor at the University of Tokyo.

News source: Japan Times
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