Come on guys, calm down. We feed the rest of the world. We are not going to run out of food or drink or toilet paper, which we export. Stop panicking. Recognise how our economy works and what we make. To hoard milk is like Inuit hoarding ice or French hoarding wine or Americans hoarding guns. Whoops.
We are not going to run out of food or toilet paper or beer or wine or hand sanitiser or even petrol. We are okay. We just need to ensure we look after each other.
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Just do a web search on what we produce as a nation. We are a food producer. It's what we do best. We are hugely lucky in that respect. We also make quality wines and beers. I have stocked up on single malt islay Scottish whiskey but that is more to improve my breath and personality.
Panic feeds panic. I was at the supermarket today and got caught up in the frenzy. My inner economist knew I was being dumb. I ended up buying two deodorants, a big packet of instant milk and a huge box of Weet-Bix and rolled oats. So I will smell nice if I have to self isolate, and my stools will be very solid.
I didn't buy any loo paper. I don't get the fixation on loo paper. I have an ample girth. But the print media in this country provides a fine alternative if push comes to proverbial shove. And a bit of ink may improve the blemishes on my ample bog Irish posterior (sorry, that's somewhat naughty to say if this article does appear in a reputable newspaper).
But New Zealand is a nation that excels in toilet paper production. We clean the bottoms of the world. There is a strong likelihood that Boris and Donald and Vladimir have applied the soft succulent tissue of the finest New Zealand three-ply to their worthy posteriors. We help clean some of the most prominent a-holes In the world. Perhaps we need to be more discerning about who we supply to.
We are not about to experience a loo paper famine. Nor a milk famine. Nor a meat famine. Nor a fruit and vege famine. We will be okay.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW (latest):
If anything milk prices will fall. Meat prices will fall. Petrol prices will fall. Most fruit and vege prices will fall. The price of that Central Otago pinor noir will fall. Beer prices may fall. We are not going to starve nor are we going to experience a lengthy period of enforced sobriety, which could shatter our collective wellbeing.
If you want to spend a lengthy period in supermarket queues stocking up on products that are likely to be in over abundance, go for it. Enjoy the company.
We are not entering the end zone. Our production and supply chains are robust and will continue. We are a very lucky country.
Have a look at what New Zealand exports. We are fortunate in what we make when it comes to closed borders. We make basic foodstuffs, wine and beer and even loo paper.
Learn some basic economic facts about our cool country and relax about food and drink and wiping. We will be okay.
We just need to look after each other. Things are going to get tough but we are luckier than many other nations in meeting our basic needs.
• Peter Lyons teaches economics at Saint Peter's in Epsom.