Photos From Shops In Barcelona Prove Why We Don’t Need To Panic Buy Food During Coronavirus Isolation

by : Cameron Frew on : 20 Mar 2020 18:15
Photos From Shops In Barcelona Prove Why We Don't Need To Panic Buy Food During Coronavirus IsolationBPM Media

A British woman currently experiencing lockdown in Barcelona has shared photos of her local supermarket – illustrating why we don’t need to panic-buy. 

Globally, there have been more than 200,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 – it’s a worrying time for everyone, and it’s totally understandable why shoppers may feel the urge to stock-pile in preparation for the worst-case scenario.


However, hoarding supplies and groceries is to the detriment of others around you – your home is bountiful while someone else’s will lay bare. If you’re unconvinced, this woman’s photographs from a supermarket in Barcelona demonstrate what it’s like when the anxiety stabilises.

Supermarket Shelves in Barcelona During LockdownBPM Media

Lockdown across Barcelona was announced last Friday, March 13. According to Victoria Mullen, the shelves were empty at that point. Toilet paper and pasta, as is the case most places, were the big hitters, practically an impossible commodity to get.

However, just a week since then, the situation has vastly improved as emotions settle around the outbreak, as seen in the photos. ‘Seeing so much negativity and fear I wanted to try to share something to help the worry of going on lockdown,’ she said.

Supermarket Shelves in Barcelona During LockdownBPM Media

Victoria added: 

I took some photos today in the supermarket in a country that is on lockdown to show you what it looks like, you will not be without food. Just to confirm on Friday when lockdown was announced our shelves were bare and we had no pasta or toilet roll just like you’re seeing.

This is five days in and we are stabilising as people have realised there is no need to bulk buy. Hoping this helps and you see the same. Please try not to worry and try to give the shops a chance to catch up with the demand and give others a chance to get what they need. Keep calm, carry on and be safe.

In an emotional video, an NHS nurse took aim at those clearing shelves – leaving her with no fruit and vegetables after coming off a 48-hour shift. However, supermarkets in the UK have been taking measures to prevent further stock-piling, such as introducing limits-per-customer and reserving the first hours of trading for the elderly and vulnerable.

Supermarket Shelves in Barcelona During LockdownBPM Media

Victoria was also keen to assure people of what lockdown is actually like in an effort to debunk some of the myths shared online.

She explained: 

We are on lockdown in Barcelona … however, we are allowed out to the supermarket and to the pharmacy and, contrary to belief, you’re not holed up for the whole time, you can go out for essentials as long as you are straight back home.

You’re allowed out to walk your dogs etc, just no social gathering at all. What you’re seeing on social media is causing fear and panic and making you bulk buy which is affecting the vulnerable and the supermarkets cannot keep up with the demand.


There is currently no sign of lockdown on the UK’s horizon – however, at today’s press conference, Prime Minister Boris Johnson did announce the mandatory closing of pubs, clubs, leisure centres, cafés and restaurants (with the exception of takeaway services).

It’s okay to not panic. LADbible and UNILAD’s aim with our coronavirus campaign, Cutting Through, is to provide our community with facts and stories from the people who are either qualified to comment or have experienced first-hand the situation we’re facing. For more information from the World Health Organization on coronavirus, click here.

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Cameron Frew

After graduating from Glasgow Caledonian University with an NCTJ and BCTJ-accredited Multimedia Journalism degree, Cameron ventured into the world of print journalism at The National, while also working as a freelance film journalist on the side, becoming an accredited Rotten Tomatoes critic in the process. He's now left his Scottish homelands and took up residence at UNILAD as a journalist.

Topics: Life, Barcelona, Coronavirus, COVID-19, lockdown, supermarket