Minal Patel of Manny’s in Long Ditton, Surrey, is working extended hours with husband Manny in a bid to keep up with the coronavirus spread which has resulted in a significant boost to store footfall and sales this week.

Manny and Minal Patel

L ro r: Minal and Manny Patel

She says: “The speed with which this situation is evolving means that we are having to keep a constant eye on stocks and sales and everything has been turned on its head. Last night we worked for two hours after closing just trying to reorganise and replenish the shelves.

“Slow-moving categories such as ambient grocery have now become our fastest sellers. We can barely keep up with demand for dried goods such as pasta, rice and tinned tomatoes and pasta sauces. I’ve also increased orders of things like long life bread and part baked baguettes and just a few hours after today’s delivery we only have one loaf of long-life bread left, while availability of normal fresh loves is still quite good.

“Last night we totally reorganised our stock room which fortunately for us is quite large, to make much more space for ambient grocery such as rice and pasta, plus of course toilet roll, while alcohol was moved to the back as demand for that has lessened.

“Demand for goods to bake from scratch such as flour, butter and yeast has also soared; we sold out of all our yeast for making bread two days ago and I’m still waiting for more to be delivered.

“Fortunately just last month I bought a spare freezer for the stock-room in a sale, it could turn out to be one of the best things we’ve ever bought as demand for frozen vegetables and things like Quorn Mince are also skyrocketing.”