One of the world’s largest suppliers says this is reason behind the toilet paper shortage

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The toilet paper aisle at the Piggly Wiggly in Leland is completely empty on March 15, 2020. (Photo: Sydney Bouchelle/WWAY)

RALEIGH, NC (WTVD) — While finding toilet paper and paper towels has become a little easier they are still far from plentiful and we all want to know why.

So imagine the questions you might face if you worked for one of the world’s largest suppliers of those products.

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“We have family and friends all over the map and we’re being asked all about that,” Eric Abercrombie said. He lives in Atlanta where his company Georgia-Pacific is headquartered.

Like other paper product companies, Georgia-Pacific was taken by surprise at the start of the pandemic, according to Abercrombie. “We saw a consumer spike in purchasing. We saw that several weeks back where we saw our retail demand go about two times,” he said.

Early on, the problem with supply catching up with demand seemed to be on the demand end. Some experts attributed the shortage to consumer panic that led to hoarding. But that should have cleared up weeks ago.

So Georgia-Pacific, using industry and census data, did some calculating.

Turns out, now that most people are using the bathroom solely at home, and not in commercial businesses, the demand for toilet paper made for home usage is up a whopping 40 percent, according to the paper company, which along with other manufacturers, is trying hard to make up the difference.

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