SIBU: There seems to be no end to ‘panic buying’ of sugar here as several supermarkets had their stock gone barely hours after getting their fresh supply.
A brief market survey yesterday observed that several outlets in town had their stock of the commodity had run out as early as 11am.
Speaking on condition of anonymity, a staff of a supermarket here told thesundaypost that their stock of sugar was gone shortly after getting the supply.
“There seems to be a lot of demand for sugar these days and I have not seen anything like this before - not even during festive celebrations,” she said.
She added that their stock of sugar was gone in a matter of hours.
Meanwhile, a bulk shipment of 586 metric tonnes of sugar arrived here earlier this week. Asked for clarification on the situation, a spokesperson from the Ministry of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism here figured that this could be due to the panic buying spree spawned by the fear of possible sugar shortage.
“Wholesalers here had distributed their stock of sugar to supermarkets, retailers and so forth for public consumption.
“My guess is that people here are still worried despite the repeated assurance given about the availability of
the commodity in the market.
“This perhaps, prompted them to stock up sugar at their homes,” he said.
Towards this end, he advised the public to refrain from panic buying as there was no need to purchase sugar in bulk.
He reiterated that this would deprive others of the opportunity to obtain their supply of sugar. He also warned traders from manipulating the situation through
hoarding, refusing to sell or even hiking the price of sugar.
“We will not hesitate to mete out stern action against them if they are found to be guilty of such an offence,” he cautioned.