Pandemic Prompts Amazon To Shutter Prime Pantry For Now

coronavirus, amazon, prime pantry, fresh, staples, delays

As online shopping soars due to the coronavirus outbreak, Amazon made the decision to temporarily close Prime Pantry, according to a report by CNBC Thursday (March 19).

A notice posted by Amazon on its Prime Pantry page said the service is temporarily closed and the company is “busy restocking.” Prime subscribers use Prime Pantry for the fast delivery of food and household goods.

“Due to high order volumes, Pantry is not accepting new orders at this time,” the notice stated. “This means that items listed as ‘Ships & Sold from Pantry’ cannot be added to your cart. We apologize for this inconvenience and are working with our partners to get these items back in stock as quickly as possible.”

It suggested customers turn to other places on its website, such as Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods.

“Amazon Pantry is not accepting new orders at this time while we work to fulfill open orders and restock items following increased demand,” an Amazon spokesperson told CNBC. “We are working hard to make these products available again and will update customers once we can take new orders.”

The spokesperson had no information to share regarding a reopening date for Prime Pantry.

Other Amazon services are also delayed due to issues with the pandemic. Same-day deliveries, including groceries on Amazon Fresh, have been impacted as demand increased due to lack of stock at brick-and-mortar stores.

Even Amazon’s main website sections are slowed due to delivery and inventory issues.

To address the problems, the eCommerce giant is implementing new measures, like hiring 100,000 additional warehouse and delivery workers. Third-party sellers were also told their goods would be put on the back burner to prioritize the shipping of necessary staples during the coronavirus outbreak.

Earlier this week, Amazon told independent merchants they couldn’t send any merchandise to warehouses unless the products were staples or medical. Amazon said it could be April before other items would be accepted.