No less than the Prime Minister Scott Morrison has implored us to stop panic buying and stop it immediately.
However in the absence, until mid last week, of any clear statements from governments at any levels that Australia is a major food exporter and we are unlikely to suffer any short term food shortage then quite frankly is it little wonder, those with no agricultural industry knowledge, during a pandemic, maybe tempted to panic buy food.
History tells us this is the case just look back to the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1919 basically during that period people were not kind to each other - it was survival of the fittest.
Now we would hope everyone would behaviour better today given advances in science, communication and food supplies but realistically with no statements coming forth from government people will panic.
Last week Federal Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management Deputy Leader of the Nationals David Littleproud hit the airwaves telling ABC News Breakfast, we should take great pride and comfort that Australian agriculture has provided us with one of the safest and most secure food supplies in the world. And the reality is we produce enough food for 75 million people, we are just 25 million people. So there is no risk of us having any issues around food security.
He went onto to say the only pressure that is being put on those supply chains are from people themselves - from the stupidity of the people themselves. They need to take a deep breath, have a cold shower and understand that if they shop normally, then the shelves will be stocked normally. But when you have people rushing to supermarkets, putting pressure on supermarkets to stock those shelves quickly because of panic-buying then that obviously means that shelves are empty - that is just common sense. All I ask people is to use two words: common sense.
Hopefully heed the advice but in the meantime retail butchers are enjoying a mass arrival of new customers seeking products as the large supermarket chains have had their shelves stripped bare of all meat.
Merrifield Farm, Merriwa, manager Phoebe Morgan said it was great after the drought to have people rushing to order their products pork, beef and lamb for home delivery.
"Its like its Christmas we have had so many calls in the last few days, " she said.
"If we can retain some of these customers once everything calms down that would be great. We believe the quality of our range we convince them to continue to support smaller local producers."
Merrifield Farm breed and rears their own pigs, with beef coming from a farm at Cassilis and the lambs ,previously grown on the farm before the drought, now coming from Binnaway where the pigs are processed.
All local producers hope people take the opportunity now to support their enterprises.
This is a list of Hunter suppliers from Slow Food Hunter Valley:
Margan Family Wines , Broke is selling delicious fresh produce and eggs that are all grown onsite. Quantities are limited and the produce can be picked up from their restaurant 7 days a week at 1238 Milbrodale Road Broke during opening hours.
The Reader's Cafe and Larder sells a great range of beautiful farm fresh produce direct from our local farmers and is open Monday to Saturday each week.