Total eclipse of the mart in Cairns
BOTTLED water, bread, softdrinks and chips became hot property in Far Northern supermarkets as eclipse revellers stocked up and left shelves bare.
Major supermarkets have reported a rise in sales and have had to put on staff to cope with demand.
Piccones IGA admitted it was caught unaware as sales went up 10 per cent over the weekend, while major chains Woolworths and Coles were comparing the rush to pre-cyclone preparation and putting on extra staff to cope.
It was not just limited to Cairns either, with signs lining the highway through Mareeba, warning people headed to the Eclipse2012 festival that was their last major shopping stop before the Palmer River site.
"It's been manic, fantastic," Mareeba Mobil cashier Annie Wojcinski said. "I've never seen Mareeba so bopping."
Coles Queensland general manager Mark Scates said the weekend had been "massive", although they had been prepared for the rush.
He said their Far North stores were re-stocked daily with a train delivery, so there were no concerns of running out.
"A lot of people came into town on Friday and the second wave hit yesterday (Saturday)," he said.
"Stock has been very good for us, we've replenished it very well and we've got extra staff helping.
"Customers are taking it as fast as we can get it out there. We've already got our cyclone stock in too, so they've got about 100 pallets (of water) out the back if necessary."
However, Peter Piccone of Piccones IGA said they only realised the influx on Friday and were unlikely to get extra stock in before the Wednesday event.
"Water (has been popular) and bread is a bit low too," he said.
Woolworths also reported a "significant increase" in sales and a spokeswoman said the CBD store had been further affected with the Remembrance Day ceremony on the Esplanade.
NEW CAIRNS.COM.AU COMMENT POLICY
We welcome your comments on this story. Comments are submitted for possible publication on the condition that they may be edited. Comments submitted without a full name and suburb/location will not be considered for publication. Please read our full comment policy and publication guidelines.
Share this article
Stocking up: Tourists Rick Lannan and Susanna De Leijer hit the shops.