Supermarkets and food shops in the region might be low on stock, even KFC may be running out of chicken, however spare a thought for the families who face this harsh reality every week.
With cries from many residents facing the prospect of empty shelves, other residents within the region are struggling to obtain supplies as well, many who aren't in a position to stockpile or buy in bulk if the opportunity presents itself.
Despite the federal government in talks about isolation periods for transport workers to ease the pain in regional areas of the country, the COVID-19 pandemic has hit a new wave of concern for many.
Welfare workers across the region have reported a spike in demand for assistance from those facing challenges heightened by the COVID-19 pandemic and not necessarily aimed at shortages on supermarket shelves.
Ararat Emergency Relief committee Rick Thomas said pre Christmas the organisation received a higher than normal calls for assistance that has continued into the new year.
"The week of December 5 to 11 calls for assistance were high," he said.
"32 visits from families needing food and transport.
"From December 20 to 24 it was high again with 23 visits from people needing help.
"90 hampers and 55 bags of toys were handed out to families in the week of Christmas."
Mr Thomas said while the organisation took a small break from December 29-31 they still helped five households.
He believed the food shortage hadn't really impacted their clients because clients could still collect food and food vouchers as normal.
Stawell Inter Church Council Welfare secretary and public officer Mary Rita Thomas said the council has had a spike in demand for assistance.
"Since December 25 to January 12 we have helped 43 households with direct food aid and grocery shopping vouchers, this is about 15 more households than we helped over the same period last year," she said.
"We have definitely had an increase in demand for grocery shopping vouchers and direct food aid for December last year and thus far in January.
"This year so far, more help with grocery shopping vouchers and with direct food aid has happened earlier in the month, we have also had an increase in households isolating due to COVID-19 who need direct food aid."
Ms Thomas said the Council has already reached their monthly budget for January.
"In response to the increased need, we have in purchased $3,400 in grocery items to distribute and since the start of the year and we have increased the money amount of our grocery shopping vouchers," she said.
"Our normal monthly budget is for $3,300 for both grocery purchases and grocery shopping vouchers and it isn't the end of the month yet."
Ms Thomas suggested the spike in demand may not be to shortages in supermarkets rather to expenses over the Christmas school holiday period.
The council's 2021 Christmas distribution helped 94 households made up of 296 individuals, 118 of whom were aged 13years old and younger.
The Stawell Inter Church Council welfare Cottage is located at 20 Sloane St Stawell and is is staffed entirely by local volunteers Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 10.30am - 12.30pm. For out of hours emergencies ring - 0408 038 949.
In response to the empty shelves across the country Woolworths CEO Brad Banducci has urged the public to be patient.
"As we welcome in 2022, it's clear that we are entering a very different phase of COVID, not least because of the high levels of community transmission associated with Omicron," Mr Banducci said in an email to customers.
"When you're shopping with us at the moment, you might unfortunately have noticed gaps on the shelves, or substitutions in your online order.
"Unlike the surge buying of early 2020 (who could forget the toilet paper), this is because of the number of people in our supply chain in isolation from suppliers to truck drivers and distribution centre team members, which in turn is causing material delays to store deliveries."
Mr Bamducci has asked customers to settle for alternative products until the gaps on the shelves were filled.
"In the meantime, we have more than enough stock in the system and plenty more coming," he said.
"We also have good supply within each 'category' of product (even if your favourite isn't available, a good alternative hopefully should be), so it really helps if you can be flexible with the choices you make.
"We would of course also ask you to keep shopping as you normally would and to continue to show kindness to our teams."
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