Photo: Brandon Hartley

The Netherlands has sufficient food stocks to keep supermarket shelves filled but the panic buying of recent days has disrupted the supply chain, according to the Dutch supermarket lobby group CBL.

Supermarkets nationwide have been stripped of pasta, rice, fresh fruit and vegetables and toilet paper as consumers stock up on essentials because they fear coronavirus will hit supplies.

‘The increase in demand for long-life products has led supermarkets to do all they can to keep the shelves full,’ the CBL said on Saturday. ‘We do have enough stocks and that distribution centres and the country’s 4,000 supermarkets are working flat out to keep stocked up,’ the organisation said.

The organisation expects that the peak panic buying of the past few days will soon disappear and supermarkets will get back to normal.

The Albert Heijn supermarket chain placed page adverts in Saturday’s newspapers calling on consumers to ‘do your shopping as you normally would’. And prime minister Mark Rutte condemned the panic buying on Friday, describing hoarders as ‘antisocial’.

Meanwhile, online food retailers are reporting their business is booming, and have warned consumers they may face delays in delivery because of the demand.