Beginning tomorrow, March 18, Bullock’s Independent will be offering an hour of early shopping exclusively for seniors (those over 65) and people will compromised immune systems.
“We’re trying to offer an environment that’s a little more conducive to those that have a compromised immune system or seniors to try to give them a space to get in and shop,” said Darcy Bullock.
The store will be open from 7-8 a.m. and “we’re relying on people to respect that time frame and leave it open for people who meet that criteria to come in,” he added. “We want to make it a safe environment for them. We just hope we can provide them with what they need as we struggle to get product in.”
He acknowledged that some supplies have been low or unavailable, but that’s due to an increase in what people are buying, not shortages. “We do have lots of food but the way the shopping patterns have been it’s making it hard to keep the supply steady so it’s more about getting product to the stores than it is running out of product. There’s lots of food to go around from what we’re hearing, it’s just a matter of getting it here in a timely fashion,” Bullock said.
The store will be putting some limits in place on items like toilet paper and water, and soon poultry, eggs and potatoes will follow suit, he added. “We want to be sure people can get a couple cartons of eggs or a bag of potatoes and not 10 or 12 of each.”
Galen Weston, CEO of Loblaws, addressed shopping habits and supply in a statement yesterday. This is part of what he said:
“Those who went shopping recently will have seen extraordinary numbers of people in stores, long lines, and aisles empty of product. This was a result of extreme levels of buying as millions of Canadians stocked up their kitchens and medicine cabinets. I’m sure the many photos of bare shelves on social media only increased your level of concern.
“First and foremost. Do not worry. We are not running out of food or essential supplies. Our supply chain and store teams are responding to the spikes in volume and quickly getting the most important items back on the shelf. Volumes are already normalizing somewhat, and we are catching up. There are a few items, like hand sanitizer, that may take longer to get back, but otherwise we are in good shape.
“Another concern you may have is that your supermarket or drugstore could raise prices on the items you and your family need most. Do not worry. This will not happen at our stores. We will not raise a single price on any item to take advantage of COVID-19.
“Some of you may also be worried that your local Shoppers Drug Mart or supermarket could close as part of shutting down certain stores and services. Do not worry. We have been in contact with both Provincial and Federal governments. We all agree that food and drug stores are essential services and we must do what we need to in order to keep them operating and serving every community in the days and weeks ahead.”
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