Tesco removes food bank trolley after it’s raided by panic buyers

Posted On 17 Mar 2020 at 1:48 pm

Tesco, in Church Road, Hove – Picture by Paul Gillett / Creative Commons / geograph.co.uk

A Hove supermarket removed its food bank donation trolley after panic buyers were spotted raiding it.

A customer alerted staff to items being taken from the trolley behind the tills at the Tesco superstore in Church Road, Hove.

They asked customers to leave donations with cashiers at the checkouts to make sure it gets to those who need it most.

German Doner Kebab

The trolley was returned to its usual place on Tuesday afternoon.

The removal was spotted by former councillor Chris Hawtree, who said: “I was shocked to hear in a #Hove supermarket that its food-bank basket has been taken out the back because people were stealing tins from it as they could not find stock to buy.”

On Sunday, Tesco and all the other big supermarket groups issued a joint statement urging customers to remain calm and not to stockpile.

It said: “We know that many of you are worried about the spread of coronavirus (Covid-19).

“We want to let you know that we are doing everything we can so that you and your families have the food and essentials you need.

“We are working closely with Government and our suppliers to keep food moving quickly through the system and making more deliveries to our stores to ensure our shelves are stocked.

“Those of us with online delivery and click-and-collect services are running them at full capacity to help you get the products you need when you need them.

“We thank all our colleagues in stores and supply chains who are working day and night to keep the nation fed.

“But we need your help too.

“We would ask everyone to be considerate in the way they shop. We understand your concerns but buying more than is needed can sometimes mean that others will be left without.

“There is enough for everyone if we all work together.

“Together we can make sure we are looking out for family, friends, neighbours.

“Together we will care for those around us and those who are elderly, vulnerable or choosing to remain at home.

“We are doing all we can to rise to this challenge. Serving you and keeping you and everyone who works with us safe will always be our priority.”

  1. Valerie Reply

    Civilisation is fragile and this shows how little it takes to lose it. Sad to have to assume the worst now & move on it to save it turning even more feral.

    Supermarkets MUST strictly ration now.

    • Peter Atkinson Reply

      Agree, Valerie! I think ‘rationing’ now is almost upon us!

    • Peter Atkinson Reply

      FOOTNOTE: I think, if this ‘nonsense’ goes on too much longer, I think the Government will introduce a ‘WW2 style’ of ‘rationing’, where perhaps, such as ‘coupons’ will be issued which then will be taken by the retailers??

  2. Catherine Reply

    Think people coming to this store from rough areas. Surely this would not be done by people of hove with good jobs and nice houses. Not good. So sad the poor have to do this really

    • Gareth Reply

      You can’t just blame the poor, besides it’s poor people that use the food banks, it’s probably snobs like you taking it.

      • Julie Reply

        Yes, I completely agree, shame on you Catherine.

        • Tracy Alston Reply

          Not nice hearing about food bank raided. I am a care worker I been doing my shopping at a corner shop but let me say one thing its not about food and how we live we are humans I have seen alot this last few weeks and no one is poor thats a word how to dicribe people.If people now are not open minded and just stop panic buying the people who need food or basic stuff and they find it hard.manners do help Dont like the word poor times like this brings the best out off people but my a say one thing people can be they own enemy

    • Barry Reply

      Why would poor people steal from a food bank? They are the ones that use it, stupid snob

    • Sarah Reply

      What a terrible assumption to make ! It has to be the poor because they are rough.!!!!! Let’s hope you never have the misfortune to live in a POOR area as you so eloquently put it.
      It’s not a crime to be poor, nor does it make them rough, I’m sure it’s not a status people choose!
      We should never judge, you haven’t lived in their shoes. Surely at a time of much uncertainty the one thing we can do is Be Kind. Maybe you could work on that.

    • Neville Reply

      Só you being rich gives you the right to pass judgement on poor people, may I remind you that this virus has no discrimination whether it be class or colour, so kindly keep your self opinionated remarks in your head!!!

    • Andrew Reply

      Yeh its usually the middle class morals that go first. Wouldnt be suprised if the person pinching them was loading them into a mercedes.

    • Jellybean Reply

      Wow Catherine, you really think this is an exclusive act of the poor??

    • SB Reply

      How patronising what a snob the poor don’t have the money to stock pile

    • Ruth Reply

      What kind of comment even is this?! People with nice houses?!?!

    • Heidi Reply

      Shocking statement! Shame on you. Just because people live in big houses with posh postcodes does not mean they have better morals than those from your so-called rough areas. I think you have shown ‘poor’ judgement and deserve to get a ‘rough’ reception for views such as that. #allinthistogether

    • LE Reply

      Except it will be the better off snobs who will be stockpiling cause they’re the only ones who can actually afford to, makes sense it would be one the better off taking it,

    • Sinead Reply

      On the contrary. This is a middle-class problem. Those that can afford to buy £300 of shopping in bulk and have large boots to transport trolley loads home. Poor people shop day to day in small amounts, they can barely afford a normal week’s shopping. Shame on you indeed!

      • Mrs Yasmin Khan Reply

        Dear sisters and brothers,

        Amid of this calamity and crisis,we have to think and care about other fellow beings,the elderly and vulnerable in particular.

        Just donate anything whatever in your capacity,care and help others.This is the true happiness and comfort you can bring in yourself.

        May God,give us the courage and strength to carry out this act of kindness,Ameen.

        • Andy. S Reply

          I must say, even though I totally agree with the backlash comments in respect of Catherine’s comment, of which was not only thoughtless but foolish, the point that the food bank was raided has clearly been lost. Just have a dig instead. I have never put into a food bank, but would be happy to pay into an account on a monthly basis for food Bank, I would want food purchased VAT Free to ensure the money goes further and they can get actually what is needed working with suppliers and those who actually use it. What happened at Tesco’s Hove would certainly not happen again anywhere, if your going to dangle a carrot, there will always be someone/animal to take it.

    • Lisa Jane Neal Reply

      Hi absent minded you are…..rich people stockpile too!

    • Graham Reply

      Maybe the people who took it are people in need, maybe they were well off and wanted more on top of what they have.
      Either way it’s down to people buying more than what they need and behaving selfishly and not remaining calm. Panicking only feeds the fear of everyone else around. People should behave with more common sense.

    • Nicky Jackson Reply

      Catherine, I think you have to have a serious rethink on your comment, shame on you.

    • Mark Reply

      What a toffee nosed stuck up snobby reply, blaming it on “poor people” probably her herself 😂😂😂

    • Kate D Reply

      Just wondering Catherine, what with your good job and nice house, how much do you donate to or help local charities? You want to criticise people who may be desperate, think about why they are?!
      People with the funds are the ones taking necessary items off the shelves as they’re selfish.
      Enjoy living in your bubble believing that only poor and struggling people commit crime!

    • Andrew T Reply

      Where in the report does it state it’s poor people? Catherine, put away your ill pre-conceptions about poorer people. Shameful.

    • Gabby Reply

      That s where you wrong many family have only enough to buy a few days worth of food! It is the richest people emptying the shops! The poor are left without, they cant stockpile they have no money for that, some people rely on £80 a week they go to the shop and it s all empty by the afortunated ones

    • John Reply

      You really are a snob, aren’t you Catherine.

      People like you that make assumptions like this are part of what’s so messed up in this world.

      “Almost ¾ of people at food banks live in households affected by ill-health or disability. ¼ live in a household where someone has a long-term physical condition, 1 in 6 has a physical disability and 1 in 10 has a learning disability, or live with someone who does. Ill health often increases living costs and may be a barrier to doing paid work.”

      Quote from the Trussell Trust for you

  3. Christopher Hawtree Reply

    I am glad to find that the food-bank basket has been brought back today – perhaps as a result of the publicity after I learnt of this. And a close eye is being kept on it now, handcuffs at the ready!

    Meanwhile, milk is to be had there but gin is running low.

    Not sure that I much care for the label “former councillor”. One tries to be many things in this life! Though, as it happens, somebody stopped me to talk about the… Library (word is that it has been closed down, but am awaiting more details).

  4. joan matthews Reply

    The shopkeepers are to blame for this…allowing customers to fill up their trolleys with whatever they can get in… they should have been rationed 3 weeks ago when it first started there is no food shortage in this country there is enough for everyone…if they are limited it what they can buy..just disgusting animals

    • Peter Atkinson Reply

      I think it’s good that MANY of the Supermarkets are now putting ‘restrictions’ on what people can buy, however, I think SOME Supermarkets have been rather ‘slow out of the blocks’ in enforcing restrictions! I agree with Joan’s comments here!!

  5. Richie Reply

    For God’s sake!! What’s the matter with people!!! Sorry but iam with chirs!! Gin and whiskey it’s not bloody doomsday just yet!! Behave!! Think of other people! Most shelfs are magically full again next morning!! Bloody morons!!just dont bulkbuythe good whiskey!! Takes years to make!! Said my bit and thank you!!xxx

  6. Diana Reply

    What’s next ram readers I’m from Basildon Essex I’m being cared for at home due to having M.S cancer and other related illnesses I’m tired of hearing about poor areas and areas that thrive. We are all under the same sky we all share the same air that we breath, it makes me cry the selfishness I’m seeing is shocking please stop panick buying it’s heart breaking to see the greed in people’s faces on the news those people that have filled the car up and go in for a second go.

    • Peter Atkinson Reply

      Agree Diana! I think the ‘restrictions’ that are now, SLOWLY, being put in place by MANY of the Supermarkets are ‘great’, but, unfortunately, it still doesn’t stop people coming back for ‘another go’ a bit later! Perhaps the Supermarkets have now just GOT get ‘tough’ with people!!

  7. Cliff Reply

    A new low for mankind , stealing food from the poor and homeless !
    You should be ashamed of yourself !!!!!

    • Nick Reply

      I guess you could say I am a panic buyer!! .. I went to the supermarket several times and got a decent trolley full each time.. I also bought 5 packs of toilet roll..Has it ever occurred to people to not judge! I have 3 immediate family members with cancer.. My mother has months to live due to double lung and stomach camcer, my father has bone cancer and has just a short amount of time, and my grandson has leukemia.. I am very busy in all there lives, looking after my parents and helping with my grandson..i also have 6 children and am single.. I am also an asthmatic and have chest issues which puts me on the vulnerable list also… with that in mind If I was to become ill my family would be in big trouble as I am the main provider of care and thee only driver for grocerys and hospital appts etc. etc..my entire family of 12 have to self isolate to protect my grandson and parents.They said only buy what you need and I Needed it. .When I was shopping I was sneared at and had people tutting and shaking there heads.. It was extremely upsetting.. I am stocking up so I can self isolate with my huge family for 12 weeks, I can’t risk there lives or mine by being in the supermarket doing big food shops as I do on a normal basis anyway when the pandemic peaks. I do have to buy large quantity as a normal! .. I have to protect myself as much as possible for the sake of my family.. I can’t be going shopping and mingling.. So you see all is not always as it seems.. Some people Have very tricky circumstances..like my situation is not complicated enough without worrying how I’m going to feed 12 people.. So you see, don’t judge and just assume all panic buyers are selfish monsters.. I am in fear for my family’s lives.

  8. Jim Reply

    You say it’s probably poor people being degraded and taking from the donations basket but in my experience it’s the haves not the have nots who are hording as they are the ones who can afford to buy in bulk right now.
    I am ashamed at how society has reacted to the media panic and are gladly ripping each others throats out for one more packet of toilet paper.

  9. Verna Dare Reply

    Raiding a foodbank trolly is the lowest form of scumbags & its NOT always low income people some adequate money people are as bad..as for calling them animals.. Animals have rules its an insult to an animal. Give me them anyday

    • Andy. S Reply

      You don’t see animals shafting one another to get by, only so called humans do that.

  10. Tina Reply

    Why remove(steal) donated food for charity from supermarkets. After all, the food bank is a charity.

    • Bob Reply

      What a stupid statement – I’m not surprised at the reaction. However I’m truly saddened by the selfishness of what seems the majority of the people. I am an eighty years old on my own and after visiting several supermarkets for just a few items I’ve had to give up as the shelves were empty.

  11. Pamela Reply

    Having a good job does not mean you have a good heart and follow the rules the rules of society.

    • SB Reply

      Thos reply shows the opposite they think they are superior and having a nice car and house makes them better

  12. Stephen Reply

    People are missing the point here, truth is, there is a national food shortage because of the way the food industry now operates. To maximize profits and save on storage costs, they now use the just in time model which they took from the car industry.The UK imports 50 Percent of its food too.so what that means is the UK has no food security. The supermarkets know this,and are blaming the customer for its lack of safe guarding at times like these. This was a disaster waiting to happen and it must be looked at after all this is over. All what I’ve mentioned here was on channel 4 news the other day when they interviewed a food security expert.as we can see now, it’s very dangerous to mess with our food supply in this way.

  13. Tracy Alston Reply

    Well no one is poor once you see in people eyes pain and hurt from illness from this virus you dont need to panic buy its been one big eye opener to me i got brought up with manners and respect your elders which i do i have shopped the same has i would and some said about poor people thats not right humans themselfs are their worst ememy just know right from wrong we got a long way to go .

  14. D g north Reply

    You stupid women what a statement to make I walked away from a relationship in Harrogate because of the same snobbery c all these remarks are from genuine people but I don’t think for one minute you will understand

  15. Fishwife, 49 Reply

    The trolling on here is of a much higher quality than on The Argus website.

    • Dawn Ringer Reply

      Wow Catherine. How prejudice can one be when we should all be pulling together at a time like this. I’m not of the wealthy kind nor do i own my own home or drive a car… so I’m guessing I’m from the rough area as you say. Let me just make one thing clear us so called poor people we make do with what we have because we were never brought up with much so we are greatful for what we do have I would never steal from charity of any kind. I resent your comment. We all need to wake up and realise this is something serious it affects us all. Its killing our family,friends and loved ones. I fall into the vulnerable category I cant leave my home every shop near me has sold out of essentials we shouldnt be pointing fingers we should be helping each other not sussing out who’s upper class and who’s lower class

  16. M G Reply

    It’s got nothing to do with either being poor or being better off. . This is down to greed. . Sheer unadulterated greed. . . Those who are doing the panic buying, be ashamed . . No excuses.

  17. Oli Reply

    Panic buying is for selfish morons, illustrated here by raiding a bloody food bank trolley. People are so stupid

  18. Mark A. Adams Reply

    Where I live in an affluent but mixed suburban area, it’s mostly the’people with nice houses and good jobs’that push past other people and grab low-stocked items in the supermarket, on a daily basis.
    Get yourself a grip on REALITY.

  19. Jordan Reply

    Panic buyers please stop blaming those on low income, and could people think before they panic buy because if you do get the virus (god forbid) everything you’ve just bulked up on will probably go to waste.

  20. Peter Atkinson Reply

    When ALL this is over, I really think that some people really need to have a bloody good ‘long’ hard look at themselves! BUT, I wonder if they ever will???

  21. David Hughes Reply

    Don’t worry, Richard Branson and Paul McCartney, etc will come to the aid of Food Banks and help the elderly?????

  22. William Fuller Reply

    My daughter, who lives in Hove and is not poor, has been encountering bare shelves for the last week. In 5 attempts she hasn’t been able to find enough food and is running short of everything. Is anyone else in her situation ?
    People like Catherine who split people into two groups; rich/poor, black/white, gay/straight, leaver/remainer…and who attribute blame for problems without proof are those who contribute most to the destruction of social cohesion. Social media is the catalyser for their falsehoods.

  23. Argusnot Reply

    I was up at 5am and in a supermarket queue which must have been half a km in length; freezing wind too. When I eventually got in, I found the shelves well stocked with everything, probably because shoppers can’t get at it due to 1-in-1-out policy.

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