Home Australia Psychology of panic buying and how the pandemic has changed consumer behaviour

Psychology of panic buying and how the pandemic has changed consumer behaviour

Psychology of panic buying and how the pandemic has changed consumer behaviour

Panic buying and an passion in sanitiser and sourdough bread recipes are amongst the uncommon consumer dispositions to emerge in the future of the coronavirus pandemic.

Key points:

  • Sourdough and sanitiser recipes had been a prime supermarket’s most searched objects in the future of the pandemic
  • A see of consumers chanced on 46 per cent care extra about Australian-made since COVID-19
  • A serious supermarket has seen a 33 per cent expand in fruit and vegetable sales to well being-conscious consumers

    Early Newspaper

Researchers are delving into the psychology of panic investors and why they develop it, to boot as finding consumers are ability extra centered on country of starting assign than ever sooner than.

Looking support nearly 12 months in the past, Woolworths Team’s chairman Gordon Cairns stated the onset of the pandemic appeared as if it’d be “a lifetime in the past”.

So, who panic buys and why?

Psychology of a panic buyer

Wendy Umberger is a professor of agriculture and food economics at the University of Adelaide, and her research is attempting to answer to these questions.

Her team measured this by intention of a nationally representative see of consumer attitudes about food.

A supermarket with a large stretch of empty shelves.

Why develop of us panic bewitch?(

ABC Recordsdata: Freya Michie


The search for used to be conducted in June and again in December final year, and about 24 per cent of respondents admitted to panicked or “extra” buying habits.

“They had a be troubled of working out of food products, they’re other individuals that with out a doubt retract to devise ahead and they moreover wished no longer to must always stir to the stores, as a consequence of they felt if they went hunting, they had a smarter likelihood of getting COVID,” Dr Umberger stated.

Of us had been moreover extra ability panic investors, in accordance with Dr Umberger’s findings.

“The other attention-grabbing ingredient is that they fill a high trust in the authorities. So, I wager if we had been going to verbalize messages, it will somehow be messaging from trusted capabilities of the authorities,” Dr Umberger stated.

“It is no longer going to work for each person and likely it would possibly per chance probably per chance per chance well unbiased no longer work for bathroom paper, however probably we would possibly per chance well be ready to search for deeper at this information and gape how we can steer clear of this occurring in the future.”

The green and gold Australian Made logo.

Consumers are an increasing number of eager about country of starting assign.(



Australian-made focal point

One of the supreme consumer dispositions to emerge from the pandemic has been the elevated focal point and emphasis on country of starting assign, particularly Australian and locally made products, in accordance with Dr Umberger.

Dr Umberger stated 46 per cent of consumers told researchers that Australian starting assign used to be of extra importance to them since the COVID-19 pandemic.

“They’re ethical no longer sure they can trust food from other worldwide locations.

“Australian’s trust in our food plan is totally solid and with out a doubt spectacular.”

Woolworths chanced on that 74 per cent of its 11.5 million weekly customers are placing an importance on “Australian made” products, in accordance with Mr Cairns.

“Sixty per cent think that fruit and veg is the well-known Australian-made class,” Mr Cairns stated in his presentation at the Meals Agility Summit 2021.

Vegetable demand grows

Demand for contemporary fruit and greens in supermarkets has grown since the pandemic started.(

ABC South West: Zoe Keenan


Turbocharged well being and atmosphere concerns

A focal point on well being and nutrition used to be moreover “turbocharged” in the future of the pandemic, in accordance with Mr Cairns.

He evidenced that by pointing to a 45 per cent expand in consumers drinking home-cooked meals, 33 per cent drinking extra contemporary fruit and greens, and a 60 per cent expand in plant-primarily based completely mostly protein sales.

Buying habits linked to sustainability of products has moreover maintained a maintaining pattern, in accordance with Dr Umberger, which she stated used to be refined.

“Environment used to be with out a doubt starting up to be of greater anguish to Australia ethical sooner than that International Monetary Disaster,” she stated.

“After that monetary crisis, it with out a doubt wasn’t talked about at all till, with out a doubt, the final few years.”

Despite contemporary fiscal challenges facing many Australian consumers, Dr Umberger stated environmental considerations had been restful “front and centre”.

There used to be moreover a alternate in the ability of us shopped.

Mr Cairns moreover renowned a mountainous expand in on-line food hunting and renowned that hand sanitiser and sourdough recipes had been Woolworths’ two most researched objects.

Psychology of panic buying and how the pandemic has changed consumer behaviour