A message from our General Manager Matt Stanley
It is often the case, in difficult times, that grocery stores are a vital resource to the communities they serve. The recent outbreak of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is proving that this continues to be true.
You have come to us in recent days to stock your pantry, replenish cleaning supplies, and prepare alongside others in the community. As a grocery store, our co-op is in the unique position of offering essential services for our communities while also doing all we can to minimize risk to our staff, members, and shoppers.
In light of the situation our region finds itself in, I want to share the things our co-op is doing to best serve you, care for our staff, and be a responsible member of our community:
- While Astoria has had no reported COVID-19 infections, we have asked any staff exhibiting symptoms of respiratory illness or fever to stay home and notify their physician. We have also given our staff who have underlying medical conditions the invitation to discuss their concerns with me and our HR department for possible reassignment of duty.
- We have sanitizing wipes available at the entrance for you to wipe down your shopping cart. We have also installed several hand sanitizer dispensers throughout the store for your use, including one around the corner at the entrance and one at the hot food and salad bar. Our staff is actively sanitizing touch points throughout the store throughout the day including multiple bathroom cleanings daily.
- Touchless payment options all work at the co-op, such as Apple Pay and Google Pay. If your touchless pay is programmed with a credit card (not debit) you will not need to touch anything at checkout.
- Our deli management team is ServeSafe (advanced food safety training) trained and excellent food safety standards are maintained in the co-op kitchen. We are rotating serving spoons and tongs hourly on the hot food and salad bar. The deli seating area tabletops are sanitized hourly. Gloves are worn by all deli staff at all times.
- We have suspended all demos in the store.
- We are experiencing increased out of stocks from our distributors. It is likely that this will continue. It is possible that we will have missed deliveries due to the increased demand for staple items during this time. We are working hard to keep the co-op stocked.
We anticipate that guidance from federal, state and local agencies may change rapidly over the coming days and weeks. We will continue to monitor closely and be nimble in adjusting our operations to prioritize the health and safety of you and our staff.
I know you have many choices when it comes to where to purchase groceries. Thank you for choosing our co-op and for being an integral part of our community.