Grocery stores located in areas hardest hit by the ice storm were able to reopen today, because some Quebecers, who have been plunged into darkness for more than 72 hours, no longer have enough to eat.
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This day should allow grocers to absorb thousands of dollars in losses due to power outages.
They still need enough products and employees to open their doors.
“We have the basics, let’s say, and we have a team that has worked hard since Friday evening, even overnight from Friday to Saturday, so that we can offer our customers as many products as possible,” Frank Hinault, owner of Intermarché Boyer, explains in an interview with TVA Nouvel.
The Quebec Food Retailers Association (ADA) recognizes that certain products may be missing in some food markets.
“We focus on the essentials, because people who haven’t had the strength for a few days, well, they need more of the basics. So we make sure we have those products available. Others may be missing. But that’s normal given the traffic jam the last few days.” says Stéphane Lacasse, director of public and government affairs for the ADA.
Many grocery stores that ran out of capacity had to throw out large amounts of food.
While the majority of people buy Easter supplies from grocery store refrigerators, others have chosen to dig through the trash cans at these businesses.
“I think it’s a good way to save money. At the same time, as long as we get rid of the garbage, we can eat … storage,” explains a citizen who collects food thrown into the garbage.
“Independents have more choice. We can just give out. But signs, sometimes, order merchants to throw it away. Today, in 2023, there is less tolerance for food waste,” says food researcher Sylvain Charlebois of Dalhousie University.
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