Empty grocery store shelves common sight across DMV as winter weather looms

Possible winter weather this weekend on top of the omicron variant are hurting the supply chain, leading to empty aisles at the grocery stores and leaving essentials such as milk, bread and meat in high demand.

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Shoppers across the DMV have been making their way to local grocery stores ahead of potential snow starting Sunday, but finding bare shelves when trying to stock up.

"We couldn’t get any produce. I had two meals planned of salads – couldn’t do either of them," says shopper Taylor Savage. "Couldn’t get ground turkey. Most of our meat we couldn’t get. Most of the produce is like empty shelves."

Grocery stores such as Aldi have put out statements apologizing, but there's no indication as to when new shipments could come in to fill shelves again.

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FOX 5 spoke with Linda Dunn, the faculty director for the supply chain master's program at Georgetown University, who says people will have to get creative with their meals and try out new items and brands in the meantime if stores don't have what they're looking for.

"I think the reason we’re seeing all the empty shelves right now is because of worker shortages," she says. "We saw first the great resignation and now this is being compounded by what I’ll call the great sick out from COVID – really as employees have to call out being sick it’s impacting everything from manufacturing to drivers to people stocking things and putting things on the shelves."


Dunn says it's difficult to predict how much longer customers will have to deal with empty shelves, and with prices going up, she says we just have to be flexible and patient.