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COVID-19: Police impose limits on staple food purchases amid panic buying

Jakarta Post - March 18, 2020

Jakarta – The National Police's food stability task force has enforced a limit on the amount of staple foods available for purchase in a bid to ensure availability in the long term amid panic buying prompted by the COVID-19 outbreak.

Rationing will be implemented for rice, sugar, vegetable oil and instant noodles, as reported by kompas.com. The task force will limit every customer to a maximum of 10 kilograms of rice, 2 kg of sugar, 4 liters of vegetable oil and 2 boxes of instant noodles.

The police issued a letter regarding the policy on Monday, and sent it to several business associations such as the Indonesian Retailers Association (Aprindo), the Jakarta office of the Market Sellers Cooperatives (Puskoppas) and the Indonesian Provincial Government Association (APPSI)

"We have issued a letter [regarding the rationing] to make sure nobody takes advantage of the situation," task force head Brig. Gen. Daniel Tahi Monang said on Tuesday, as quoted by kompas.com.

He added that the policy would take effect starting Tuesday and end when authorities declared the situation normal.

The task force acknowledged the rise in staple food prices. "The prices have increased somewhat due to rising demand after some panic buying," Daniel said.

The police's task force, he went on to say, would make sure that the supply of staple foods remained sufficient. "I urge the public not to panic buy," he added. (nal)

Source: https://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2020/03/18/covid-19-police-impose-limits-on-staple-food-purchases-amid-panic-buying.html