Super Foods continuing on the front lines for Guernsey

MARK DELAP/guernsey gazette Super Foods has been a flurry of activity with a run on groceries and sanitizing supplies, delivery trucks and extra staff to try to handle the increased loads in the wake of COVID-19, which is not only on a rampage, but has no expected end-date.

GUERNSEY – While many businesses are closing down, there are still employees out on the front lines, continuing to service our communities, includingpostal workers, gas station attendants, Workforce specialists, and grocers.

Super Foods is one business that has remained open and inundated with the task of opening themselves up to the virus while maintaining service and supplies for their local customers.

Super Foods employee Kathy Orr addressed the question of whether there has been a directive to close the store.

“They have not said anything about closing the store,” Orr said. “My husband actually works for one of the law enforcements here and brought a paper home and so far we’re exempt; grocery stores and the places where people really need to survive with. That’s what I’ve been told so far.”

Because of the crowds and the uncertainty of the path and future course of the virus, the stress levels have been rising all over the nation.

“It’s been very busy and very stressful,” Orr said. “Keeping up with things has been a challenge, but our community actually sticks together. Most of them have been pretty reasonable and understand.”

Toilet paper, hand sanitizer, eggs and bread are the most popular items to be stored and hoarded right now all over the country and the same rings true at Super Foods. Suppliers to the grocery chains are trying to keep up and are under rules and boundaries as to how much can be delivered. Generally there are more allotments to bigger cities.

“It hasn’t been too bad, although we have been allotted a certain amount that we can order, and maybe we get it and maybe we don’t Orr said. The bread guy was here the other day and they shorted his truck 500 items.”

There have been areas of panic throughout the nation and tensions can run high and even violence breaks out in some areas. Grocery stores are being blamed also in some areas for not stocking shelves with enough goods, but in all cases, the stores are not the ones to blame. The focus must be switched to the suppliers and those dictating their operations.

Milk is one item that stores have been finding a hard time keeping on the shelves. Jodi Bohnen from Thrifty Foods in Wheatland said they have a special relationship with their dairy supplier, and have been working feverishly to keep the supply so that it meets the demand. 

Orr commented on the milk issue saying, “We just got a shipment in today and it will probably be gone tonight.”

The immediate fear from the public is mandatory quarantine and the closing of grocery stores. Many grocers, however have already addressed this potential problem as many are already formulating plans for curb-side delivery.

“As long as they don’t demand us to close, we’ll be open,” Orr said. 

Although most of the customer base from Super Foods have been calm and are weathering the storm, Orr said some are scared and stressed and some are panicking.

“They come in and see that there’s no milk or eggs or flour and they’re stressed over that,” she said.

As most people who have been born and lived all their lives in America, the comments come rolling in saying they have never experienced this before. Some are old enough to remember the blackouts, the rationing and the curfews during World War II, but never has anyone seen things globally to this degree.

“I have lived in Guernsey my whole life,” Orr said, “and I’m goin’ on 50 years and I’ve never seen the craziness we are seeing right now.”

As for advice from a local grocer who puts their life on the line each day for their customers, Orr consoles by saying, “Relax, we’re going to make it though it. And remember to sanitize and wash your hands.”

Although this virus has been brutal and is no respecter of persons, the community of Guernsey has seen a great show of unity, caring and strength of character in this pandemic. Including especially those such as Super Foods employees who try to keep people calm and who are doing their best to keep their shelves stocked.

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