For two months now, Clarissa Garcia, 37, has bought Colombian soap, flour and sugar to sell in her small stall at the market of La Fria, a leafy town a half-hour drive from the border.
"People would be dying of hunger if there weren't Colombian products," she said, washing tomatoes as shoppers streamed by inquiring about prices. Some grimaced at her response.
Venezuela's poor, and those who live far from the border, have no choice but risk ever longer and more dangerous lines in front of supermarkets patrolled by National Guards soldiers where scuffles are now common.
By 7 a.m. on a recent morning in San Cristobal, the capital Tachira, some 2,000 shoppers were waiting in front of a supermarket hoping to be among the lucky few able to buy soap and flour when its doors opened.
"We can't stand this anymore," said Talia Carrillo, 38, who arrived the night before, slept in the line, and woke up in the morning to find others in line being robbed.
"I earn minimum wage. That doesn't give us the base to buy expensive products. But we can't go on like this, we're barely finding anything."