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Grocers reassure customers about food supply as demand soars during coronavirus

Last Updated Mar 17, 2020 at 9:16 am PDT

An empty meat fridge is seen at a Costco store as customers stock up on March 13, 2020 in Montreal. Canada's major grocers are reassuring customers their stores will not run out of food or supplies amid the novel coronavirus outbreak. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

Canada’s major grocers are reassuring customers their stores will not run out of food or supplies amid the novel coronavirus outbreak.

Loblaw Companies Ltd. CEO Galen Weston says in a letter to the company’s loyalty program members not to worry.

Weston says empty store shelves seen recently were the result of extreme buying levels as Canadians stockpiled supplies.

He says the company’s supply chain and store teams are working on getting the most important items back on store shelves, though some products, such as hand sanitizer, may take longer to restock.

Empire Co. Ltd. CEO Michael Medline says in a letter to customers that the company, which owns Sobeys and Safeway in Canada, has never seen so many customers visit its stores, but he has great confidence in the country’s grocery and food supply chain.

Medline says the company is working hard to keep shelves stocked amid unprecedented demand.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 17, 2020.

Companies in this story: (TSX:L, TSX:EMP.A)

The Canadian Press