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Minnesotans Depleted Costco, Target Supplies In Coronavirus Preparation

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- As the coronavirus has made its way to the United States, medicine, food, water and other supplies are flying off the shelves at stores across Minnesota.

At Costco in Eden Prairie, customers have cleaned out the bread aisle.

Alison Pence was just doing her weekly shopping trip Sunday, but noticed the empty shelves.

"I know what it's about. It's a lot of panic," Pence said. "There wasn't much food left. The mac-n-cheese, the spaghetti, the water..."

The Minnesota Department of Health has encouraged people to prepare for if and when the coronavirus makes it to the state.

Health officials told people to keep a a couple of weeks worth of non-perishable food items and supplies in the event you get sick and had to stay home.

"I have no idea how to describe it It's like they are preparing for an outbreak or whenever you have like a storm," shopper Eric Harris said.

WCCO visited the Target at Knollwood in St. Louis Park and noticed empty shelves of water bottles. Masks are also flying off the shelves.

A nurse in the parking lot said they have to keep an eye on masks at work.

"Visitors ask if they can take them and we say you can take two or they'll take the whole box," she said.

Still, health officials have urged there is no need to panic and the risk to contract coronavirus is currently low.

"Wash your hands, don't hang out with sick people, just keep yourself safe," she said.

If you're looking online for supplies, you may see a shortage in hand sanitizer on Amazon, but currently they have a variety of disinfecting wipes left in stock.

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