What Toilet Paper Can Teach Us About Supply Chains
- During the COVID-19 pandemic, toilet paper shortages were reported in March 2020 in multiple countries due to hoarding and panic buying.
- At first, few believed the pandemic would be serious. Later, people realised they might need to stock up on certain items in case of a shelter-in-place order, or in case they did not know how long such an order would last; suppliers could not assure that they could keep up with demand.
- However, manufacturers continued to produce even more than they had before. Demand was higher for the types of toilet paper used at home because so many people were at home who would have used toilet paper away from home.
- In countries other than the United States, the bidet was already seen as a solution, and a survey before the pandemic had indicated an increasing number of Americans would be interested.
TEDX Talk by Harvard Professor on Toilet Paper Supply Chain
How Toilet Paper Companied Dealt with the 845% Demand Spike?
Based on the Business Insider Report
A run on toilet paper left shelves empty across the US. But why did this happen? Turns out, it wasn’t just hoarders’ fault. Sure, panic buying was part of it. But coupled with a division between commercial and consumer manufacturing of toilet paper, rolls were cleared from retail stores. We spoke with a consumer behaviour expert to unpack what caused the panic buying. Then we learned how two toilet-paper manufacturers kept up with demand.
What Toilet Paper Shortages tell us about Supply Chains ? FT Trade Report
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