Communist Party Recommended Chinese To Stock Up On Food
Beijing shoppers stocked up on cabbage, rice and flour for the winter on Wednesday, after the government urged people to keep stores of basic goods in case of emergencies, though it assured them there were sufficient supplies after some panic buying.
Communist China’s Ministry of Commerce published a seasonal notice on Monday encouraging authorities to do a good job in ensuring food supplies and stable prices ahead of winter, following a recent spike in the prices of vegetables and a growing outbreak of pandemics.
But the ministry’s advice to households to also stock up on daily necessities in case of emergencies prompted significant confusion, sending some rushing to supermarkets to purchase extra supplies of cooking oil and rice.
It is going to be a cold winter, we want to make sure we have enough to eat, said one woman loading rice onto a bicycle outside a supermarket in central Beijing.
A long line formed at the supermarket’s cabbage stall, as people bought supplies of the vegetable that is traditionally stored at home and consumed over the winter months.
State media has sought to reassure the public that there are plentiful supplies of basic goods.
Communist China’s state broadcaster CCTV reported on Tuesday that there had been some “over-interpretation” of the ministry’s advice.
Some cities including Tianjin in the north and Wuhan further south have released winter vegetables from stockpiles for sale at lower prices in supermarkets.
But some panic buying appeared to continue on Wednesday, with several people complaining online of empty supermarket shelves, attributed largely to a growing COVID-19 outbreak.