I went to Wal-mart to buy some toilet paper and was shocked to find they didn’t have a single roll of any brand — not even the horrible generic kind.
It was as you might have guessed due to the panic over the coronavirus. But why? Why are people horading toliet paper of all things?
A lot of it comes from panic and mis-information. The average american uses about 100 rolls of toliet paper a year.
The United States however doesn’t import its supply of TP. In fact we import less than 10% and of that, most of that comes from Mexico and Canada – not from China.
In America we have about 150 companies who made TP so our domestic supply isn’t likely to run short – even if production in places like China shut down.
So then why are people freaking out and hoarding it? Well, experts have an answer — it makes you feel better, even if it actually doesn’t do much. Logic often fails when dealing with emotional issues.
“Stocking up on toilet paper is … a relatively cheap action, and people like to think that they are ‘doing something’ when they feel at risk.”
This is an example of “zero risk bias,” in which people prefer to try to eliminate one type of possibly superficial risk entirely rather than do something that would reduce their total risk by a greater amount.
Scient tells us that hoarding also makes people feel secure. This is especially relevant when the world is faced with a novel disease over which all of us have little or no control. However, we can control things like having enough toilet paper in case we are quarantined.
This is why you are advised to prepare for a pandamic well before one ever happens. It’s sort of the smart “what if” plan. Or as we like to say here are Prepper Strong – Hope for the best but prepare for the worst.
So what does this mean?
Well always have at least a two week supply of basic supplies in stock. You don’t need to heard stuff, but it doesn’t hurt ot have a few weeks or even a few months worth of supplies.
Need a guide on what to stock up on? Check out our guide on preparing a pandemic kit.