Privacy: Amazon blocks non-essential items from its warehouse amid coronavirus outbreak

Amazon has said it will stop stocking a range of items in its storehouses in a bid to deal with surges in demand for domestic odds and ends as the COVID-19 pandemic develops. 

This will have a direct impact on third-party individuals and groups selling items deemed non-essential, as they will now have to work harder to ship orders to customers.

According to reports, the decision will stand until early April 2020, applying to Amazon warehouses across the US and Europe. As panic-buying continues, items such as toilet paper are still unavailable on the retail giant’s UK website.

Sellers of other kinds of products have been quick to criticise the move, as more restrictions have fallen on medical supplies as well as household essentials.

As reported by the BBC news website, a Reddit user expressed their dismay, stating:

“My sales just doubled and Amazon halted all my shipments.”

“This is absolutely crazy,” said another poster, before going on to say that they had been getting ready for industry disruption.

Items posted by third-party sellers will still appear as posts on Amazon, but it is up to those independent dealers to sort out the packing and shipping of the products themselves.

Speaking to the BBC, Amazon said:

“We are temporarily prioritising household staples, medical supplies, and other high-demand products coming into our fulfilment centres so we can more quickly receive, restock, and deliver these products to customers. We understand this is a change for our selling partners and appreciate their understanding.”

A seller based in the US, told the BBC that the online store was going about things the right way, stating:

“Small businesses will hurt because of it and some will completely go bankrupt if the supply chain disruption goes beyond a month.”

The seller, who makes a number of computer-based products and electrical items available on Amazon, said that Amazon was making sure that it still gets critical items out to people at this time of global urgency.


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