This week’s arrival of Storm Emma - the so called ‘beast from the east’ - caused panic among shoppers across the country, who scrambled to stock up on supplies ahead of the snow.

The increased footfall through the doors of supermarkets and shops led to long queues and empty shelves for most staple foods.

The demand for bread was particularly high in recent days, as shoppers scurried to get their hands on a sliced pan ahead of the storm. Photos and videos posted to social media of empty bread shelves in major supermarkets added to the frenzy.

Speaking to the Irish Farmers Journal on Thursday, Michael McCambridge, managing director of Dublin-based bread maker McCambridge, said his company was forced to increase bread production by a factor of 2.5 to meet the unprecedented demand.

He added that his team has been in the business a long time and was well able to manage the spike in demand. McCambridge said the communication from retail customers had been excellent, which had also helped manage the situation.

“Demand was strong this week. However, I anticipate the end of the week being quiet following the red alert,” added McCambridge.

“No McCambridge vehicles will be driving during the hours covered by the red alert,” he said.

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