(KUTV) — First toilet paper, then disinfectants and now meat.
Some grocers are imposing limits on meat purchases for customers in order to prevent empty refrigerators. Grocers are worried more panic-shopping is occurring because of the slowdown at meat processing plants due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Kroger is adding a purchase limit on ground beef and fresh pork, CNN reports.
Costco, Walmart and Sam's Club are doing the same, according to WKRC. At Coscto, members will only be able to purchase three items of meat, including poultry.
In recent weeks, top meat suppliers have announced temporary closures as workers test positive for COVID-19.
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The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union estimates that 20 meatpacking and food processing workers have died, so far, from coronavirus.
The union reports that the closures resulted in 25% reduction in pork slaughter capacity and 10% reduction in beef slaughter, according to CNN.
Last week, Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Sen Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) called on agencies to identify problems and implement solutions to help protect food markets work for consumers, as well as farmers, ranchers and packers.
“With many restaurants now closed, food suppliers have struggled to adjust to new consumption patterns to the detriment of consumers, as well as participants up and down the meat supply chain. Livestock producers – especially independent livestock producers – are feeling the pain of these disruptions acutely,” the senators wrote.
President Trump signed an executive order on Tuesday for meat plants to stay open during the pandemic.