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Manufacturers still struggling with high demand of paper towels and toilet paper

Demand for toilet paper was so high that to keep their shelves stocked, retailers across the country had to buy up foreign brands, mostly from Mexico.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Are you having trouble finding paper towels and toilet paper in stores? You are not alone.

According to a recent reviewed.com article in USA Today, there's a new shortage of paper towels. The article cites industry experts, saying due to the COVID-19 pandemic, paper towels are in high demand and manufacturers are struggling to keep up.

So what does this mean for you? If you can't find paper towels in stores, it might be time to look online.

Several large retailers appear to have paper towels in stock; however, your go-to brand may not be available.

As for toilet paper, it is back on store shelves. But you may not recognize some of the brands. 

Demand for toilet paper was so high during the pandemic, that to keep their shelves stocked, retailers across the country had to buy up foreign brands, mostly from Mexico. 

A CVS in New York was selling three Mexican toilet paper brands: Regio, Hoteles Elite and Daisy Soft. Mexico's Petalo was on the shelves of a Piggly Wiggly in Sister Bay, Wisconsin. And a Safeway in Fremont, California, had several of those brands, plus Vogue, whose label said in Spanish that it smells like chamomile. 

The stores said they needed to get creative during the pandemic as people hoarded toilet paper.

2 On Your Side spoke to a Wegmans representative who is also selling different brands of paper products as well to meet consumer demand. 

"The paper towel industry is actually still recovering from all of the panic shopping that occurred early on in the pandemic. I think it's important to note the paper towel industry is one of the oldest manufacturing industries in the country, and many were already at capacity prior to the pandemic," Michele Mahaffy of Wegmans said.

"We are working with brands that we certainly haven't carried in a while. We've also found that brands that we haven't previously worked with prior to March. We've also sought out paper manufacturers who really serve other markets, like perhaps restaurants, who are now producing products for retail, so we've been able to use those products as well in our stores."