It’s not your imagination. Grocery stores are struggling to stay stocked, thanks to everything from omicron to weather.
Why do grocery store shelves seem pretty empty right now?
It’s not your imagination. Grocery stores are struggling to keep their stores stocked.
According to the Washington Post, there are many reasons why your favorite items are hard to find. The biggest is of course omicron. The huge surge has hit stores hard. They take care of everything from sick workers to closures to deep cleaning.
The head of the industry organization, Consumer Brands Associationtold the Post that there were more employee absences in the past two weeks than in all of 2020.
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It’s not just storekeepers calling in sick, but also truck drivers. And these drivers face more than just omicron infections. Severe winter storms have made it difficult for healthy drivers to get where they need to go.
This massive traffic jam in Virginia where drivers were trapped for more than 20 hours is just one recent memorable example.
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People’s habits are also changing. Experts say more people are now eating at home. They blame a combination of fears on the omicron surge and rising inflation for the change.
According to a national retail sales tracker, grocery sales rose more than 8% in December. Analysts say this change is quite common when prices rise, as dining out becomes more of a splurge when you’re watching your budget.