COVID-19 Member & Shopper Update 4/1
Dear Co-op Members and Shoppers,
Thank you for all of your support and well wishes over the past few weeks. Our co-op community’s response to this crisis is a source of considerable pride and continual hope for me.
Today we are announcing the launch of our new Curbside Pick-Up program, which is designed to support employee and shopper safety while providing our most vulnerable community members with access to staple food items.
Due to our limited capacity at this time, this program is intended for our customers who are at the highest risk, which includes seniors and those with significant health issues. Also to start, we can only offer a limited selection of essential products. We hope that in the coming days and weeks, we can scale this program up to serve more shoppers and offer more variety.
Starting Thursday, April 2, here is how our Curbside Pick-Up program work will work:
- This program will be available Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday.
- We will make an order form available on those days beginning at 8 am. Once we reach our order capacity for the day, the form will become unavailable.
- Once we’ve picked your order, you will receive a confirmation phone call between 1 and 5 pm, during which we will take your credit or debit card information and process the order.
- Curbside pick-up will start at 6:30 pm in front of the store at 623 Stonecutters Way. A staff member will be there to assist you.
Based on the many inquiries we have received, we fully expect the demand for this service to meet or exceed our capacity. Again, this program will initially be limited to our community members who are at high risk coming into our store. Please use it judiciously. We appreciate your cooperation and patience.
If this program does not meet your needs, please consider having someone come into the store to shop for you. They may use your member number without any special accommodations.
Given the labor requirements, we know that ultimately we will need to charge some sort of service fee to sustain this program.
This is a brand new endeavor for us, and we are working hard to make it work well. Please give us feedback so that we can continue to improve serving the community in this new way. Over time, we expect to scale up to offer more variety of products and serve more customers.
For those of us shopping the traditional way, we have a few requests:
- One of the most important things we can all do is plan our shopping to limit the number of trips and people coming to the Co-op. Whether it means a longer list for your household or offering to shop for neighbors and loved ones, please consider the ways you can help our employees, customers, and local vendors stay as safe as possible. We respectfully ask that you shop alone to the extent possible.
- You have probably noticed that we now have employees stationed outside coordinating the number and rate of shoppers entering the building. We are asking for one person in the Co-op entryway at a time. This is to support physical distancing and everyone’s safety.
- Thank you for your extra patience while waiting in line to enter the store. If you have any mobility issues, please ask an employee, and we will help you. Everyone in line has been gracious about helping, so please feel free to ask for this assistance. We are here for you.
- Look for the new orange stickers on the floor. They are there to help practice social distancing while shopping by maintaining a six-foot distance from others.
- If you bring reusable shopping bags, you may be asked to bag your own groceries. Also, please wash your reusable bags between uses.
- When you are able, consider paying with debit or credit in place of cash or checks.
Finally, please consider supporting the Vermont Foodbank by rounding up your purchases this month using our Give Change program. The need for food assistance throughout our state is increasing rapidly, and the Foodbank needs our help.
Again, thank you. Getting through this next period of time will truly be a cooperative effort. We are, of course, very fortunate to draw upon clear community values, strong relationships, and a robust local food system.
Kari Bradley, General Manager