Amazon refuses non-essential products in its warehouses

Amazon refuses non-essential products in its warehouses
Mike Mareen /

During the current corona crisis, Amazon is only allowing the most necessary supplies into its American and European warehouses. The online retailer wants to keep space free for medical and urgent products.



Online demand is rising rapidly as more and more people go into self-isolation for the coronavirus. In order to meet this new demand for daily-use and health products, Amazon is making free space in its warehouses and currently rules out other, non-essential goods.


Sales partners on the platform were notified on Tuesday that stocks of household commodities and medical supplies are running low and that Amazon will therefore give priority to certain categories in order to "quickly receive, replenish and ship these products to customers", Reuters noted.


Baby products, groceries and books

Until 5 April, Amazon will only allow essential supplies in its American and European distribution centres. This does not mean that Amazon will temporarily stop selling non-essential items, such as electronics and toys; just that those products may run out sooner in the coming weeks or that sellers will have to ship them directly to consumers.


Amazon has already determined which essential categories are still allowed in the warehouses. These include baby products, beauty and care products, groceries, but also industrial and scientific products, pet supplies and books.


Amazon counts on "understanding" sales partners

"We understand that this is a change for our selling partners and appreciate their understanding", Amazon said in a statement. However, the move could also have unforeseen consequences for the e-commerce giant, according to Reuters: it seems that the advertising revenues — which are very lucrative for Amazon — could collapse at some point if retailers are less able to use the platform. 


Moreover, there is a good chance that sellers will look for other sales channels, such as Wish or eBay, especially now that production is just starting up again in China. It is clear that the corona outbreak even puts Amazon to the test. Earlier, the Seattle-based company announced that it was urgently looking for an additional 100,000 employees in the United States to meet the peak in demand.