Will The Panic Buying Ever Stop?

Bad news from the experts, guys.

Article heading image for Will The Panic Buying Ever Stop?

Why is everyone and their dog panic buying bog roll and Dettol? Why is everyone shoving each other out of the way at the shops? And when will this madness stop?

These are all questions Nik & Jules had for Monash University Professor Hean Tat Keh, who's dedicated his career to understanding consumer psychology.

Or in other words, why the world has hit the shops like it's Christmas to stockpile tinned goods, loo roll and tissues to combat COVID-19.

Speaking to 93.1 Triple M Bundy, the professor said Australians will turn to panic buying at the supermarkets when they are ill-informed.

A fear of the unknown and the unknown impact coronavirus could have on their families will cause consumers to turn to buying bulk, creating an unstoppable pack mentality:

"When they go to the store and they see other shoppers filling up their trolleys, these consumers will do the same," he said.

Will it get better, though?

Prof Hean Tat Keh believes panic buying will fuel more chaos for a few more weeks, if not months, particularly as new cases continue to pop up across the country and hysteria is amplified by the media.

There's also a job to be done by those in power.

The professor hopes authorities can communicate regular updates to the public in a clear, transparent manner to slow the chaos, and that people stay home and self isolate where required.

The bottom line?

Don't believe everything you read. If you're sick, stay away. And finally, keep singing those hand-washing ABCs.

17 March 2020

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