Some supermarkets are sporting bare shelves of mosquito repellent, due to heavy rainfall and floods in parts of Queensland and New South Wales.
Shoppers have already reported dwindling stocks of mosquito repellent in southeast QLD including in Brisbane, the Gold Coast, and the Tweed Heads and Lismore region in NSW.
A note with the words, ‘sorry customers, this item is temporarily unavailable,’ has been placed on some shelves where anti-mosquito products like Aerogard are stocked.
Despite some stores sporting empty shelves, Coles and Woolworths said they haven’t seen an increase in demand for insect repellent.
“We will continue to monitor customer demand with our suppliers,” said a Woolies spokesperson.
Demand for insect repellent typically peaks over the height of summer in January each year, according to Woolworths.
However, the La Nina weather pattern and heavy localised rainfall have provided the perfect mosquito breeding conditions, meaning demand for mosquito repellent could skyrocket in the next few weeks. Some state health authorities are already urging people to stock up on outdoor insect repellent, in light of recent cases of mosquito-borne viruses and encephalitis.
Canstar Blue’s consumer expert Megan Birot said stock shortages of insect repellent could further put pressure on supermarkets still recovering from supply chain issues.
“We’re yet to see supermarket stock levels return to normal and any unplanned increase in demand could lead to shoppers panic buying which would further exacerbate supply issues,” she said.