SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) – As people scour the internet and stores for Clorox wipes that have been out of stock for months, executives of the the companies have some bad news.
The Oakland-based company will not be able to be adequately stock stores until mid-2021 as sales have taken off during the COVID-19 pandemic and people attempt to protect against infections.
“People are suffering, COVID is surging, but everything we know right now – we probably won’t be back in the type of in-stock positions, or you know, what people are used to going to the store, until mid-2021,” Clorox Chief Operating Officer Eric Reynolds said in an interview with NBC Nightly News Thursday.
This is the third time this year where the company has had to roll back supply exceptions due to the unprecedented demand in a product that normally sees reliable, steady sales with a slight bump during flu season.
The wipes are among several products that have seen shortages since the beginning of the pandemic, including toilet paper and hand sanitizer.
Reynolds said the company plans to significantly ramp up production, and by February it ship 1.5 million canisters and packages of wipes daily.
A representative from The Clorox Company issued the following statement to KRON4:
The current situation is not about a shortage but rather about unprecedented demand for our disinfecting products — upwards of 500% during the pandemic. We remain laser-focused about meeting that demand and are encouraged by some of the progress we’ve already made.
We’ve been pushing as hard as we can to expand production of Clorox disinfecting wipes, and we’re now manufacturing and shipping record numbers — nearly 1 million packages — to stores every day. As soon as they’re on shelf, though, people scoop them up. This is not surprising given the continued worsening trends of COVID-19. By February, we should be supplying 1.5 million wipes packages a day – an additional 50% increase — and expect continued supply improvement through summer of next year.
People should also be able to find Clorox regular (disinfecting) bleach back on their store shelves now. And our Pine-Sol original multisurface cleaner received approval from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for kill claims against the virus that causes COVID-19, giving consumers another option for disinfecting.
As a health and wellness company providing disinfecting products to support public health around the world, we take very seriously the role we play during this pandemic. We’ve run our manufacturing facilities 24/7, added more than 10 new external manufacturers since January to help maximize product output, and focused on products that can be made faster and on efforts to expedite products to retailers. We’re also doubling the size of our wipes plant, which is expected to be up and running in February.
We’re continuing to leave no stone unturned in our response to this ongoing, elevated demand for our disinfecting products.
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