When the coronavirus pandemic hit the United States, the sense of calamity triggered a massive reaction in which thousands of people stocked up on toilet paper, causing widespread shortages in the country.
Retailers like Walmart were left with empty shelves with no paper products to offer.
In recent weeks, while products like disinfectants wipes are still in short supply, toilet paper is in stock, say experts at major manufacturers. This is partly because toilet paper does not face a lack of raw materials.
Vivek Joshi, senior vice president of Georgia-Pacific’s tissue business, which makes Angel Soft and Quilted Northern, told NBC´s TODAY (https://www.today.com/news/there-still-toilet-paper-shortage-due-coronavirus-experts-weigh-t188704) that within the past four to six weeks, there’s been more of their products on shelves. In March, the demand was double what it usually is, he said. Now, the industry is seeing a roughly 10-15% increase.
The demand for toilet paper has changed because people are staying more at home, so there was a redistribution of resources by the manufacturing companies in the segment.
The need for toilet paper products used in places like shopping malls and offices is much lower currently; so many manufacturers have turned their focus to manufacturing and marketing household items. In addition, they have also reduced the number of toilet paper types to maximize the capabilities of their facilities.
It is still unclear whether the country will experience another toilet paper shortage, but according to experts, the chances are low because companies have more stable demand patterns now. However, it is hard to make many predictions because it is difficult to say where the pandemic will lead to long-term demands and consumption habits.
Meanwhile, the supply chain for disinfectant wipes and paper towels is still overburdened because consumers are using them at a much higher rate than before.
The use of toilet paper remained the same. What changed was the place of use, not the quantity.