Shoppers panic in the face of COVID cases

| 10/09/2021 | 82 Comments
Cayman News Service
Photo courtesy of Foster’s

(CNS): Government officials may be imploring the community not to panic after two people with no travel history tested positive for the coronavirus yesterday but shoppers are taking to the supermarkets and stores anyway, piling their carts high and stripping the shelves of toilet paper and disinfectant amid fears of what might happen next.

Following Cayman’s first case of community transmission in over 400 days, Foster’s was the first of the large grocers to urge people not to panic-buy, saying it was “unnecessary” as the warehouse is fully stocked.

But because of the panic, the store chain has introduced limits per person on some goods and has reintroduced a mask mandate for all staff. Foster’s said it was asking customers to remain calm after the surge of panic buying on Thursday and keep to their usual shopping routine.

However, product limits have been placed on various items at Foster’s and Priced Right, including disinfectant and hand sanitizers, bleach, and paper products. Where there is a limit of two products per person, this is marked on the shelves but full details are available on the store’s website.

Managing Director Woody Foster said that there are some supply issues on some items due to the global pandemic, but the company continues to receive a constant supply from local and overseas partner suppliers.

“We will continue to receive product from our suppliers and our warehouse is fully stocked of product, including high demand items,” he said. “While we understand that these times can cause panic, we ask you to remain calm when in our stores and to respect both our team and those around you.”

Following the community transmission and the additional news regarding a positive passenger on a Cayman Airways flight, he said that as a precautionary measure, from today the store is implementing an internal mask policy which requires all team members at Foster’s and Priced Right locations to wear a mask while in store.

Customers with questions on product availability can speak to staff members in store,
email, or use Foster’s and Priced Right’s social media channels
@fosterscayman and @pricedrightcayman

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Category: Business, Retail

Comments (82)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    It seems we have reached her immunity – to being rational and sensible. 75 per cent are vaccinated. Covid was always going to be in the community whatever we did. There is no need for a lockdown or panic buying. This is pathetic

  2. Mumbichi says:

    I understand this perfectly. In times of crisis, you stock up on that for which you can’t make yourself. It’s probably a good thing, to get people to stock up on supplies that might extend or augment their lives in the middle of the hurricane season.

    Having no toilet paper will never kill me, but as one who has had on occasion to do without….. it’s important enough to have lots of what you like, ALL the time.

    • Anonymous says:

      But this is not a time of crisis!!? What is your justification for this ludicrous stockpiling?

      • Mumbichi says:

        I’m not trying to justify it friendo. I’m simply explaining that these are supplies that people should ALREADY have. They should have already had them months ago; my perception is that most people wait until the ‘event’ — whatever it is — is upon us, and then react.

        If people would simply keep stocked up on those nonperishable goods and preserved foods that they require, these feeding frenzies would be unnecessary.

  3. Anonymous says:

    A pediatric version of the Pfizer vaccine that can be given to 5 – 11 year olds is supposed to be available by the end of October according to news reports today. That would be more valuable than all the toilet paper on the island.

    • Anonymous says:

      Your kid first…

      • Anonymous says:

        People Been saying not until the kids get vaccinated. Now the vaccination is going to come out for the younger kids and they say your kid first Give me a break. Open up the border! What are we going to do wait another year till these parents get in the mood, find the perfect reason, have 3 more cases ( in the news) of community spread before we can open and then there will be another excuse. Covid is not going anywhere. There will be no difference if open Oct. 14 without quarantine or Christmas, New Years, next Year…. Some one will always have some excuse.

    • Anonymous says:

      The UK isn’t even recommending vaccines for healthy 12-15 year olds so doubt they’re going to offer for 5-12 any time soon.

      • Anonymous says:

        That’s only to do with supply. They will when they think they have enough available

        • Anonymous says:

          It is nothing to do with supply but whether it is advisable to vaccinate children. The UK government are being very cautious when it comes to children.

      • Anonymous says:

        And yet, whilst we (Dr Lee) claims we are following U.K. advice & protocol, are vaccinating the 12-16 year olds. SMH!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Some of the comments on here are nuts. Literally insane, some people actually thought, even with a closed border policy forever, we would never have Covid in the community, get a grip… the vaccine offers great protection, it was always inevitable, we have to live with the virus. We are so far behind reality and doing what all other respectable countries have done. Why are people panick buying things and talking about lockdown when we have a 75 per cent vaccination rate? The idea that we would keep Covid out of the cayman commune forever is the most stupid idea ever. It was never going to happen whatever the government chose to do.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Gather around all at the healing neon lights at FIN. 🙂

  6. Anonymous says:

    Maybe they heard the Delta variant causes the runs?

  7. Bob says:

    you cant help stupid!
    stupid is as stupid does!

    • Anonymous says:

      Bob @ 3:53pm Perhaps you’re correct! Remember during the height of the pandemic last year, the exact behaviour was reported in many parts of the world – hoarding toilet paper and paper towels. I saw reports from Australia, UK and of course we remember the same in Cayman. Even Jimmy Kimmel made fun of it then!

      Does anyone know the association between covid and toilet paper exactly? No! No obvious direct association. Simply following social media BS!

      But what does it do for those who’re not ‘stupid’? It cleans the shelves of those items so, what is one to do but join them if one needs TP & towels. That’s why many people are stocking. Despite how stupid it may be, would you rather NOT have any because you couldn’t find it when you needed?

  8. Anonymous says:

    I think I missed where it says one of the symptoms of Covid is chronic diarrhea.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Just to be clear; panic buying toilet paper is an act of utter stupidity, however panic buying all the toilet paper ahead of all the stupid people? Genius!

  10. Anonymous says:

    Is it possible to medicate toilet roll with the vaccine?

    I’m sure some jab avoiders will be panic buying it!

  11. Anonymous says:

    I just don’t get the toilet paper thing….because Cayman had two community cases, the US will stop making toilet paper?

    It is so irrational. Why?? I have no clue what is in people’s minds that prompt them to do this?

    • Anonymous says:

      The idea is that people are stockpiling household items and food, so instead of going to the shops twice or three times a week, they only have to go once a month.
      A month ago we bought a 3 month supply of toothpaste, shampoo, shower gel, washing up liquid, canned food, pet food and litter, and things we can keep at home to reduce the number of runs to the shops we have to do.
      Now we can make a list of the fresh items we need, and run out quickly just for those things as infrequently as possible, spending less time in the store, and reducing our risk of catching covid.
      We would shop online to reduce the risk even further, but delivery is $50 to our house and that is just too expensive when you are on a tight budget.

      • Anonymous says:

        When you run out for fresh items every week, why not stop by the paper aisle each time to see if there is a roll of eight?

        TP buying is an irrational metaphor for the pandemic. Fosters, Kirks, Hurleys…..I… will ship in plane loads of TP each week if people want to buy.

        Not garbage bags, pasta, candles, frozen veg…but TP.

        This post made in the best of jest, but I don’t get it either ✌️🙈

  12. Anonymous says:


  13. Anon says:

    Ridiculous. Why would we lockdown over a few community cases when 75% are vaccinated? What an overreaction

  14. Cheese Face says:

    The trouble is, the dumb bastards buy as much as they can carry, leaving the rest of us (with brains) to take what’s left. I went to Cost U Less last week to do my monthly shop and the shelves were empty. Today in Fosters I bought a 6 pack of TP and was getting grief from people in the office. FFS I have none left in the house because the zombie assholes have bought it all.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Get a grip Cayman!

    • Anonymous says:

      I got mine in hand and I’m not letting it go all weekend. My girlfriend’s got that Cleopatra grip😘

  16. Anonymous says:

    Same people are probably already stocked up on same items for the storms. Talk about ridiculous over reaction!

  17. Anonymous says:

    God bless stupid people!

  18. Anonymous says:

    People aren’t so much afraid of covid as they are of what the government will do, like no notice lockdowns. Government (not just this one) messaging, planning, management, etc. has created perfect storm circumstances for this kind of freak out to occur.

    Also agree with the comment about prior people testing positive on arrival. Yes people on CAL airplanes have had covid. Not new.

    • Anonymous says:

      There is no need for a lockdown when damn near the whole island has been vaccinated. People need to stop panicking and use some common sense!

  19. Anonymous says:

    surely the terminology has been wrong from the start, – if ‘herd stupidity’ was adapted maybe it might’ve jolted some to think for themselves

  20. Anonymous says:

    The general majority are just plain stupid

  21. No fear! says:

    The fear and panic buying is ridiculous. Covid is here to stay, learn to manage it.

    To all those mentioning possible lockdown at yesterday’s press briefing, it should never be an acceptable option. Many countries have overcome waves of Covid without a lockdown which comes with devastating emotional, psychological and mental impact.

    We need to focus on boosters shots, personal responsibility, good air ventilation and therapeutics. This will get us through the next stage of pandemic.

    • Anonymous says:

      And a lot of people needlessly died in those countries to “overcome” those waves.

      Cayman has (until yesterday) been a beautiful example of how, if you go on lockdown and control your borders, you can effectively end community transmission.

      The only reason why other countries have had to “overcome” waves of the illness is because they weren’t able to do what Cayman did.

      • Anonymous says:

        Another deluded person who thought a no covid strategy is possible.

        • Anonymous says:

          A no-covid strategy WAS possible. We lived it for more than 400 days.
          If only the rest of the world had heeded advice to prevent the spread, like we did in Cayman, covid could have been eradicated quickly.
          But no, a person’s freedom to do what they bloody well please regardless of the wellbeing of others has trumped good sense and now look where we are. Millions dead.

          • Anonymous says:

            Being an island can be both a gift and a curse.

          • Anonymous says:

            You are so delusional. How many have lost jobs, homes cars and other assets because you think you can LOCK down forever. You obviously know nothing about virology. You are never getting rid of it….just like they haven’t gotten rid of the FLU and you can still get it. You should educate yourself….but it sounds like you want to live in a bubble the rest of your life. It’s cute though that you think locking yourself away for over 400 days was a solution.

            • Anonymous says:

              Read the post. OP says if everyone had adopted the same strategy we would have globally eradicated COVID. Probably true – virus gets eradicated when it can’t replicate itself through new infections and R value falls below 1.

            • Anonymous says:

              Cayman- 723 cases of Covid

          • Anonymous says:

            Cayman has had over 700 cases. How the heck is that no-Covid?

      • Anonymous says:

        No nation with a high vaccination rate like Cayman has experienced many deaths.

        Look at Iceland, high vax rate very few serious cases and deaths in the current delta wave.

        Lockdown was a temporary measure for the start of the pandemic when there was no vaccine. Now there is a vaccine and no need to ever go into Lockdown again.

      • Anonymous says:

        Do what cayman did? You ARE aware that many countries are doing FAR better than Cayman. They’re controlling the virus logically and their economy isn’t shut down
        You people have a weirdly self important and over inflated view if yourselves

        • Anonymous says:

          You people? And who, may I ask, are you?
          FYI, we are not locked down. We have been enjoying absolute freedom on island for the past year. No worries about who we hug, large group events, or our kids wearing masks in school. The only thing is limited flights on and off island (which kinda sucks), and quarantining on arrival.
          I’m glad that other countries are doing FAR better than our little island, but I think we have handled things pretty well so far

        • Anonymous says:

          Stating that the economy is shut down is an overstatement. Finance and construction are ticking along. Tourism, yes, it is closed for the most part. Let’s remember how much tourism contributes to the overall economy- relatively small in comparison.

        • Anonymous says:

          Which countries Sherlock, can you personally name them?

          You come off with the usual arrogance of persons with sub-par education, little to no experience, socially dysfunctional….

  22. Anonymous says:

    Come on Cayman! Just get vaccinated! Maybe the Government should look at implementing vaccine passports on island to go out to restaurants, gyms, cinema, church, events, etc to mitigate the infection risk of the unvaccinated.

    • Anonymous says:

      No to vaccine passports. Most of the island is vaccinated, so what do you care if some aren’t – you have protection. Children are not at risk, so no concern there. Makes no sense to discriminate like that.

      • Anonymous says:

        Children are at risk. It may be minor but they are.

        • Anonymous says:

          People without children or who have older children seem to forget that us parents of under 12s have actual concerns. So if one child dies that is unable to be vaccinated these people are still okay with it cause it wasn’t theirs. Thoughts and prayers is all we are anymore in this world.

          • Anonymous says:

            I have children who are under 12, and I’m not concerned, because the actual scientific data says they are at such low risk of Covid, that it is potentially less than the flu. I’m also vaccinated, and if a vaccine were available to them tomorrow, I would think very carefully before getting them vaccinated. Their risk if they get Covid is less than the vaccine risk at this point.

            • Anonymous says:

              Fair enough for you to engage in that analysis. Any responsible parent should do the same. There is always a small side effect risk from a vaccine. If the risk of covid to a child was comparable or less than the flu I wouldn’t vaccinate my kid either. That said, I do think that given the number of hospitalizations of kids that are happening now,the balance of risk will change in favour of getting the vaccine. You may conclude differently.

          • Anonymous says:

            Vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death among children and young adults around the world. If people are concerned about kids, shall we stop driving as well?

        • Anonymous says:

          The risk for children is 1 in 40,000 for dying. The more people vaccinated around children, that is how we protect them.
          Dr. Lee

      • Anonymous says:

        I won’t go to any establishment that requires proof, even though I had the shots out of principle. I am sure if I asked them to show me proof all their staff were vaccinated they would refuse.

  23. Anonymous says:

    Classic irrational kneejerk reaction

  24. Anonymous says:


    Morons everywhere.

  25. Anonymous says:

    The level of panic already is mind blowing. Truly mind blowing. It’s hard to watch an apparently rational population lose their minds over some bum roll.

  26. Anonymous says:

    These people should be locked up

  27. Anonymous says:


  28. Elvis says:

    Not a bog roll in site. Must be a connection here somewhere? Hmmmmmm

  29. Anonymous says:

    I don’t understand the panic about this one: and the additional news regarding a positive passenger on a Cayman Airways flight

    We had 24 other people test positive while in quarantine this week, didn’t we? So they were obviously on flights as well.

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