Big box introduces tough new buying limits

by | Mar 26, 2020

Bunnings stores around Australia have introduced new buying restrictions as panic buyers clear the shelves of essential items, according to a recent report, with Bunnings Managing Director Michael Schneider saying the new measures are designed to ensure nobody missed out on high-demand products.

“As the uncertainty continues, we want to make sure we can reassure customers that if they come to Bunnings you can get the products you are looking for. And you can get the things done at home you need to,” he said.

Under the new, temporary restrictions, which came into effect March 26, shoppers will be restricted to a maximum of four items per person for cleaning and storage products, gardens sprayers and batteries.

There will be a maximum of one item per customer for generators, gas bottles, respirators or face masks, fuel cans, methylated spirits and turpentine, according to the report.

However, Mr Schneider stressed most Bunnings products were still available for customers as usual.

“We are seeing increased demand for some products and we want to be as fair as possible for customers. We are working closely with suppliers to get stock into stores to meet customer demand and our suppliers have been a huge support in making this happen.”

“Our store teams are doing an incredible job looking after our customers and working to get stock onto the shelves as it comes in and I’d like to thank them for all their efforts,” he said in the report.

He also apologised for the inconvenience caused by the limits as well as for temporary stock shortages and thanked customers for their patience.

The chain has already ditched its iconic weekend sausage sizzle and cake stall fundraisers due to the deadly pandemic.

The news comes after Bunnings’ parent company Wesfarmers revealed all 53 New Zealand Bunnings stores would now be open to trade customers only and closed to the general public for four weeks following the government’s new restrictions on “non-essential services”, according to the report.

And yesterday, a Melbourne Bunnings employee broke down in tears on air during a call to GOLD104.3’s Breakfast Show host Christian O’Connell while describing the “rude” and “disrespectful” actions of some customers since the outbreak took hold.

“I work at Bunnings and the amount of disrespectful, impatient people coming through is disgusting. We are run off our feet, we are trying our best – understand that everyone, and for those that are giving us respect and are being patient, we cannot thank you enough,” he said before being overcome with emotion.

“It’s a struggle … we are trying, we are definitely trying 100 per cent … trying not to have a breakdown is impossible. Woolworths, Coles any retail worker, we are doing our best,” the employee said.