March 12, 2020 / 11:10 PM / in 20 days

Walgreens, Kroger limit purchase of some essential products amid virus outbreak

FILE PHOTO: A sign marks a Walgreens pharmacy in Somerville, Massachusetts, U.S., June 29, 2017. REUTERS/Brian Snyder

(Reuters) - Pharmacy chain Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc (WBA.O) and supermarket chain Kroger Co (KR.N) on Thursday placed purchase limits on certain products to stabilize inventory, as customers stock up on essentials amid a global coronavirus outbreak.

While Kroger placed a limit on the number of cold, flu and sanitary products per order, a spokeswoman for Walgreens said it was limiting disinfectant wipes and cleaners, face masks, hand sanitizers, thermometers and gloves to four each per customer.

Deerfield, Illinois-based Walgreens also said it is waiving delivery fees for all eligible prescription drugs during the outbreak and would offer free delivery on any purchase on Walgreens.com until further notice.

Other supermarket chains and warehouse operators such as Target Corp (TGT.N) and Costco Wholesale Corp (COST.O) also reported a rise in footfall as concerns over the coronavirus have prompted customers to stock up on essentials, including disinfectants, sanitizers and bottled water.

Reporting by Manojna Maddipatla in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur

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