Shanghainese Panic Buy Laundry Detergent, Fear Rising Prices

A Chinese man looks at an empty supermarket shelf where most of the laundry detergent has been purchased.

A Chinese man looks at an empty supermarket shelf where most of the laundry detergent has been purchased.

From Tiexue, Mop, & Anti-CNN:

The entire world is once again stunned: Shanghainese wildly panic buy laundry detergent

People are panic buying laundry detergent in the supermarkets! In the mainland, as a result of rumors circulating that daily chemical products will increase in price 5-15% starting next month, following crowds of people last week collectively panic buying salt to protect against radiation, a large number of people in Shanghai yesterday rushed to various major supermarkets to panic buy laundry detergent, soap, shampoo, toothpaste, cleaning detergent, etc. nearly clearing out supermarket stocks, with people’s bathrooms filled with all the “spoils of war” they had managed to get their hands on.

Chinese consumers purchasing laundry detergent.

A Chinese man looks at an empty supermarket shelf where most of the laundry detergent has been purchased.

Supermarket shelves in Shanghai, China emptied of laundry detergent allegedly over rumors of future price increases.

Earlier posted on Tianya.

Comments from Tiexue:


Look closely at the aisle…it’s a promotion/sale! Two clear and obvious characters! Clearly the area in the photos are where the discounted products are, so of course there are going to be a lot of people around there! Daily necessities have always been high consumption products, so when people see supermarkets having sales or promotions, they will of course scramble to buy them! Another thing, the situation where laundry detergent is going to increase in price is something that only became public these past 2 days, and whether it is true or not we can put aside for now! What season is it now?? And they’re still wearing down jackets~! Don’t tell me Shanghai is almost entering the Ice Age~! I most hate those bastards who randomly start rumors, randomly make up stories, as if the only thing they are afraid of is the world not being in chaos!!!


Without knowledge, without information, without one’s own viewpoint, without enough life experience and you will have these kinds of blind phenomenon. I don’t know what use scrambling for this and scrambling for that is except giving people a state of anxiety.


Those who are disseminating these [rumors] better be careful of getting arrested.


Poor fellow countrymen, why so excited, afraid of profiteers making a bit less money???


Japan has an earthquake and tsunami. China has people fighting for salt and laundry detergent.


Just from it being about cleaning products, it can only be said that the costs of living in society now is too high, to the point where the moment the ordinary common people hear a rumor they become afraid, with the motivation behind the scrambling still being that a little savings is still some money saved.


Strongly demand that the government intervene and investigate. Is this happening because agents for those daily use products are manipulating the public [creating rumors to increase sales]? Providing a pretext/excuse for future price increases?


As a Chinese person, it is truly very tiring. Others spend every day thinking about how to compete. We spend every day thinking about eating, drinking, shitting, and pissing. Why did the late Qing Dynasty collapse? The reason is the same. Chinese people are such wussies. Always talking about this or that constantly doing some SB things. What the central government is like is what the people will be like. Living without any backbone/integrity.


Sigh~~~~ Poor Chinese people!!! It isn’t just Shanghainese people, everyone is pitiful enough, but just who is responsible for these things?? From education alone we have failed. Could the countrymen produced by our education system be anything other than this?~~~~ I’m crying to death!!


When do we start robbing the banks?


I really don’t know if it is Chinese people who are so easy to trick or if it is just the Shanghainese who are really fucking SB, or do Chinese people just have to live so miserably.


Chinese people will scramble for anything, the world is shocked. Our countrymen should reflect upon themselves. When facing disaster, even if it is an imaginary disaster, people will all reveal their most selfish sides, their intelligence completely destroyed by their selfishness and self-interest, their their character completely trampled, only thinking of their own survival. If we were to really face a some challenges [disasters, difficult times], what would happen? I think even if there weren’t chaos, we’d create chaos for ourselves.


There’s something wrong, really wrong, with Chinese people!

What do you think? Panic buying? Discounted goods at a really good price? False story using unrelated photographs?

2011 May 6 UPDATE: “Unilever fined 2 million yuan for triggering panic buying” (Shanghai Daily)

Discount aisle. Personals @ chinaSMACK.


Written by Fauna

Fauna is a mysterious young Shanghainese girl who lives in the only place a Shanghainese person would ever want to live: Shanghai. In mid-2008, she started chinaSMACK to combine her hobby of browsing Chinese internet forums with her goal of improving her English. Through her tireless translation of popular Chinese internet news and phenomenon, her English has apparently gotten dramatically better. At least, reading and writing-wise. Unfortunately, she's still not confident enough to have written this bio, about herself, by herself.


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