Tesco have issued an apology after it mistakenly prevented customers from buying sanitary products as part of new lockdown measures in Wales.

On Sunday (October 25), Wales Minister Mark Drakeford said supermarkets have “discretion” over the ban on selling non-essential items during the nation’s firebreak lockdown.

What happened?

But on Monday (October 26), customers seeking period products in St Mellons, Cardiff, said they found the pharmaceuticals area of their local Tesco blocked off.

“I’m literally raging and in tears @Tesco how the hell is beer essential and PERIOD PRODUCTS are non-essential… this is RIDICULOUS,” tweeted @nicholasmith6.

What have Tesco said?

Tesco said on Twitter that Welsh Government guidelines had meant they could not sell sanitary products (Twitter/Screengrab)

When another customer sent a tweet to the company about the issue, it responded: “We understand how frustrating these changes will be for our Welsh customers.

“However, we have been told by the Welsh Government not to sell these items for the duration of the firebreak lockdown.”

What have the Welsh Government said?

The Welsh Government later corrected Tesco, tweeting: “This is wrong – period products are essential.

“Supermarkets can still sell items that can be sold in pharmacies.

“Only selling essential items during firebreak is to discourage spending more time than necessary in shops. It should not stop you accessing items that you need.”

The company has now apologised, adding that the issue was localised to one store and is being urgently rectified.

“Of course sanitary products are essential items and are available to customers in all of our stores including those in Wales,” a Tesco spokesperson said.

“The reply to this customer was sent by mistake and we’re very sorry for any confusion caused.”

How long will the restrctions be in place for?

The new restrictions in Wales, which began at 6pm on Friday and will end on November 9, mean non-essential retail including clothes shops, furniture stores and car dealerships must close.

Shops selling multiple types of product can stay open but can only sell essential items – which according to the Welsh Government’s website also includes those “which would normally be sold in pharmacies and chemists”.