‘Sorry about that’: Karl’s supermarket rant
Karl Stefanovic has launched a desperate rant on air over the panic buying crisis in Australia amid the coronavirus outbreak.
After wrapping up an interview with a Coles distribution centre, a staff member finished the chat by asking, "Please, Australia, be kind with each other, be patient with the teams, today when you are in there, say thank you or give a nice gesture."
The Today host then launched an impassioned plea of his own.
"That's good advice," Stefanovic said. "I was in one (supermarket) yesterday, I was walking through the aisles, there was a mother, she had a baby in the pram and she had a toddler right on top of the baby creating all this noise and mayhem and she was looking at the shelves, she had nappies under one arm, she was looking at the empty shelves … You could see the desperation in her face because the stuff that she wanted wasn't there.
"These are the sort of things people are experiencing. It is really hard."
His comments came after Prime Minister Scott Morrison blasted people for bulk purchasing supplies, labelling it "not sensible", "not helpful" and "one of the most disappointing things" he'd seen from Australians in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
Karl continued: "When the Prime Minister gets tough, they're the sort of people who really need it, who really need to be able to just give what they can to their kids.
"It's the most basic stuff. I really felt for her.
"When he (Mr Morrison) gets tough, I say to everyone, 'Please bear in mind these mums who are doing their best for their kids,' and keep all of that in mind as we move forward because it's really important to look after people who need it most.
"Sorry about that. I just had a little rant. I'm ranting a lot. Sorry."
In an astonishing press conference yesterday, Mr Morrison took a moment to address the panic buying crisis.
"Stop hoarding. I can't be more blunt about it. Stop it," he said.
"It is not sensible, it is not helpful and it has been one of the most disappointing things I have seen in Australian behaviour in response to this crisis.
"That is not who we are as a people. It is not necessary. It is not something that people should be doing.
"There is no reason for people to be hoarding supplies in fear of a lockdown or anything like this."
He noted the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee also advises against the bulk purchase of foods, medicines and other goods.
"I am seeking Australia's commonsense co-operation with these very clear advisory positions. Stop doing it. It's ridiculous. It's un-Australian and it must stop," the PM said.
Australia's four major supermarket chains, Woolworths, Coles, IGA and Aldi, took out a joint ad in Monday's newspapers titled, "Working together to provide for all Australians".
"Our suppliers and teams are doing everything possible to get as many products onto all our shelves as they can, often under very difficult circumstances," the ad reads.
"So we ask you to please be considerate in the way you shop."