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Tue Mar 24, 2020, 05:57 PM

I had a long informative conversation with the manager of my local Albertsons

I order through Instacart which keeps the customersí shopping lists and allows them to simply reorder their last order. Albertsons keeps up to date on what items are out of stock constantly so people like me, with limited mobility can see whatís available from my shopping list as well as in general. The manager assured me all the information is up to date.

Regarding the 95% of items on my list being out of stock the explanation he gave me, which makes sense is

They get three trucks delivering food every day and will continue to. So every day they are completely stocked. The truck delivery companies and the grocery food manufacturers are working to increase the deliveries if necessary.

The reason the items go out of stock is because hundreds of people are waiting outside to go into the stores. This is the part that is different from normal times. He said that although during the day customers arenít hoarding there are a lot who come in early and clean out some of the shelves. He and I agreed that as time goes by these panic buyers will fall off when they realize there isnít a shortage of food, that the problem is the virus, not food availability.

And finally, I asked him about the health of himself and his staff. Did he feel their precautions are protecting them? He described that they were in a constant deep cleaning mode, that all employees were using gloves and wiping their stations down constantly. The checkout stands are wiped down before and after each customer.

I came away feeling assured. We will eventually, and I count this as a few weeks if even that long, settle into a new normal where the panic hoarders will have stocked up and realize the food situation isnít dire.




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Reply I had a long informative conversation with the manager of my local Albertsons (Original post)
lunatica Mar 24 OP
lunasun Mar 24 #1
CaliforniaPeggy Mar 24 #2
lunatica Mar 24 #5
wryter2000 Mar 24 #3
lunatica Mar 24 #7
Lars39 Mar 24 #8
mountain grammy Mar 25 #19
uponit7771 Mar 24 #4
lunatica Mar 24 #6
lunatica Mar 24 #11
uponit7771 Mar 24 #13
lunatica Mar 24 #14
lettucebe Mar 24 #9
lunatica Mar 24 #10
procon Mar 24 #12
Princess Turandot Mar 24 #15
lunatica Mar 25 #16
HarlanPepper Mar 25 #17
Sherman A1 Mar 25 #18
dalton99a Mar 25 #20
Wounded Bear Mar 25 #21

Response to lunatica (Original post)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:00 PM

1. At least you know the store is being constantly cleaned and the staff is aware of procedures

Better than some I would guess

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Response to lunatica (Original post)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:01 PM

2. I think your peace of mind must be much higher now, my dear lunatica!

I'm glad that they're taking the necessary steps to keep the store stocked and their employees safe.

He sounds very responsible! Just what we need in these tumultuous days.



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Response to CaliforniaPeggy (Reply #2)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:10 PM

5. He was very professional when he spoke to me

He took all the time he needed to listen and respond to my queries. I too was calm and explained I wanted to know what to expect, etc. He sounded calm and informed and willing to explain the details. He told me that the companies that do canning are going to keep doing it, though they have said they will temporarily stop canning specialty items and will be canning the basic item. He used canned tomatoes as an example. They will cut out the spiced and the unsalted items. Reasonable changes that will allow them to can more tomatoes to deliver.

I hope the information Iím giving will allay some worries about the availability of food.

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Response to lunatica (Original post)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:06 PM

3. They have to stop the hoarding

Limit people on how much they can buy. Enough with "I got mine, screw you."

BTW, every Wednesday the first hour of shopping at Target is limited to seniors and people with mobility problems. You might want to see if you have a Target nearby.

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Response to wryter2000 (Reply #3)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:15 PM

7. They are limiting the number of items per customer

The problem seems to be with the very large group of people who go into the store as soon as it opens. Itís not that each one is taking too much. Itís just that there are a lot of them.

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Response to lunatica (Reply #7)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:22 PM

8. They are probably hoarding by going to store to get more.

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Response to lunatica (Reply #7)

Wed Mar 25, 2020, 11:03 AM

19. When we hit our grocery store at 8 am

it was already crowded, but we were able to buy a 12 pack of TP (we were almost out) but it was clear the shelves would be be cleared in spite of the one package limit..

the problem, I was told by a stocker, is they've never had to stock shelves from completely empty..so filling them is an issue.

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Response to lunatica (Original post)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:06 PM

4. My buddy works on the supply side, people aren't hoarding its closed restaurants and that was a

... big part of the US diet was people going out and that's not happening any longer.

People have to eat at home and not with restauarant food.

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Response to uponit7771 (Reply #4)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:11 PM

6. This is a very good point.

Iím glad you added it in this thread. Thanks!

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Response to uponit7771 (Reply #4)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:36 PM

11. In my area all the restaurants are open for takeout and delivery

Some are even giving coupons and discounts.

Of course, with no one working cooking at home is easier too.

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Response to lunatica (Reply #11)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:38 PM

13. True, the restaurants are not doing anywhere near volume they used to even in the soft hit areas.

I've had to use that burning hot thing in the counter once ... i didn't hurt as much as I thought it would.

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Response to uponit7771 (Reply #13)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:39 PM

14. You mean the STOVE?!

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Response to lunatica (Original post)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:26 PM

9. If this is still happening, they should just limit amounts people can buy

put up signs and enforce at checkout. This is stupid to still be happening

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Response to lettucebe (Reply #9)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:33 PM

10. Please see my response #7

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Response to lunatica (Original post)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:37 PM

12. I worry about the local grocery stores that

don't seem to have added any extra precautions. My SIL walked into one and turned around and walked out because in was dirty. The floors, the carts, everything was a mess, but they had lots of customers. That's a problem with the ownership and the management.

On the other, the little Korean grocer that's close to her home was super clean and we'll stocked with fresh produce and a good selection if meats and seafood. The employees were always polite and offered a squirt of hand sanitizer to every customer as they entered and exited, and wiped every surface. One nice young woman in mask and gloves offered to push my SILs cart and help her shop, explaining some unfamiliar products.

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Response to lunatica (Original post)

Tue Mar 24, 2020, 06:49 PM

15. I've wondered if some of it is that more people need to food-shop, at least here in NYC..

The result of the growing restrictions leading to the current version of a lock-down that's underway here means that more and more folks are eating meals at home than they normally would've eaten out. Lunch for certain and dinner often enough. e.g. A graphics designer working in mid-town at an ad agency might eat a sandwich for lunch every day, but most likely one from a deli near their job rather than one they made at home. Or they might have a company cafeteria available. I myself only rarely bought anything from the supermarket's deli counter when I worked, because I knew that I would wind up not eating all of it before it became stale.

This might also be more the case in a place like NYC, where there is always a new influx of people who are early on in their work career and are single, prone to socializing more etc. And not too concerned about saving money yet.

Whatever the factors, I hope it settles down soon!

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Response to Princess Turandot (Reply #15)

Wed Mar 25, 2020, 12:18 AM

16. According to the manager I talked to the people involved

with making those kinds of decisions have discussed adding more grocery deliveries to the stores.

You make an excellent point. I think youíre right.

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Response to lunatica (Original post)

Wed Mar 25, 2020, 12:23 AM

17. I'm already seeing smaller crowds in the parking lots at the 4 grocery stores in my area

And it has been orderly. Having worked in the industry many many years ago I know a little bit about how it works, unlike some panicked irrational posters sewing doom. Thanks for your informative post.

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Response to lunatica (Original post)

Wed Mar 25, 2020, 08:17 AM

18. Having done grocery for 4+ decades as a Store Receiver prior to retirement

Yes, they are getting 3 trucks per day. One perishable, one frozen and one dry load. Even if those trucks are full 53 foot trailers and just dedicated to that store (which they are likely not) it would take several days to fully restock an empty store of hard grocery.

Our trucks were normally Frozen peddle runs (with several stops on each truck) that would be a mix of Frozen Food, Meat, Deli, Seafood Frozen items.

Combo loads which would have Bakery, Deli, Meat, Dairy, Produce and whatever grocery that could be fit on the end of the trailer behind an insulated bulkhead would be dropped each day. The remaining grocery would arrive an a balance load trailer that was a peddle run later in the morning or early afternoon when drivers returned to the DC (distribution center) with the drop trailers that were picked up containing cardboard bales, empty bakery racks and empty pallets to be reused at the warehouse.

General Merchandise (diapers, baby food, formula, batteries, over the counter drugs items, etc would come several times each week on peddle runs.

Vendors would deliver their products, Milk (including cottage cheese, sour cream etc) Pepsi, Coke, 7up, Frito Lay, Snyders/Lance, Snack Cakes, Liquor, Beer, Pizzas, Ice Cream, Peg Candy, etc through the DSD (Direct Store Door) on their regular runs, some daily, some weekly, some multiple times each week.

Every chain does things a bit differently in order to find the most efficient delivery system that works for them, but that is how ours was done. Store sizes differ, so it would be hard to estimate the number of 53 foot trailers of hard grocery it would take to fully restock an empty store. I did help with a few new store start ups years ago and it was probably in the range of 5-8 loads to get the shelves full for grand opening, but as they didn't all arrive at the same time, I really don't remember.



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Response to Sherman A1 (Reply #18)

Wed Mar 25, 2020, 11:07 AM

20. Very informative.

Thank you!

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Response to lunatica (Original post)

Wed Mar 25, 2020, 11:07 AM

21. My local Safeway put up clear plastic shields at the registers...

between the cashier and the customer. Damn thing blocks the little table where people write their checks.

Good thing most folks don't need that any more.

Seeing lots of masks and gloves, too.

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