The knock-on effect of the coronavirus outbreak has reached Whanganui with a sports event postponed, the travel and forestry industry impacted and supermarket shelves hit.
Despite Whanganui having no suspected cases, supermarkets had been stripped bare of hand sanitiser on Sunday and Monday and had a shortage of toilet paper - something seen in other parts of New Zealand since the country's first case was confirmed.
In all Whanganui supermarkets, shelves that stock hand sanitiser hold a sign informing customers they are currently experiencing high demands for hand sanitiser and that there was a limit of two per customer.
But it is not only Whanganui supermarkets that are feeling the heat, with a number of local businesses being affected by the outbreak.
Forest 360 Ltd is concentrating on "keeping things ticking over" while the coronavirus slows the volume of logs needed in China, director Marcus Musson says.
The company works with 40 logging crews owned by individual contractors and harvesting forests across the North Island.
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Logs are piled up at Chinese ports because of the paralysing effect of the coronavirus. Usually 60,000 to 65,000 cubic metres of logs are moved out of the ports every day - at the moment about 3,000 cubic metres a day are moving.
"Chinese ports are pretty full. A lot of people haven't returned to work yet."
Demand has dropped and crews are harvesting better, pruned logs for the domestic market where possible. If harvesting for export, some are cutting reduced volumes and working fewer hours.
Chief executive of Whanganui and Partners, Mark Ward, said it was too early to understand what impact COVID-19 will have on New Zealand's economy as a whole but expected Whanganui to have similar disruption to the rest of the country.
"We aren't as dependent as other parts of New Zealand to the changes in international tourism and international education, but our manufacturing, agribusiness and retail sectors are exposed to challenges coming from an interruption to supply chains," he said.
Right now, they are urging businesses to develop or update their business continuity plans as Ward said it is never a bad idea to have a plan in place.
He said as part of the central government's Regional Business Partners Network, Whanganui & Partners can also assist any business owners who need help with this.
Local tourism companies like Whanganui House of Travel are also feeling the impact.
"Right now the numbers are nowhere near where we would want them to be this time of year but do we see it bouncing back most definitely," commercial planning director for House of Travel, Brent Thomas, said.
The virus has also seen the 2020 Sir Peter Snell International Track Meeting at Cooks Gardens being postponed for at least another 10 months with athletes not wanting to travel.
Whanganui Sports Heritage Trust co-ordinator Russell Sears confirmed the meeting will now be postponed until January 2021 due to low entry numbers.
"There was a definite reluctance by overseas athletes to travel to New Zealand for this year's event, including a squad of seven Japanese athletes confirmed for the mile events, only to withdraw in recent days – citing the coronavirus as their reason."
There have been five confirmed coronavirus cases in New Zealand – Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Monday that there have been no more cases over the weekend.
The number of confirmed cases around the world reaches almost 110,000 with 3800 reported deaths.
Whanganui District Health Board has been approached for comment.