Food Service during an Economic Crisis



Due to pandemic, food services are struggling to increase their sales.

Ryan A., Ryan W., Hana S., and Malak Y.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, stores and restaurants have changed drastically because of the current situation. Each store has responded differently toward the virus. Restaurants and grocery stores have had to increase sanitation due to constant directives from governor Newsom the pandemic His guidelines, as well as those from the CDC have required significant measures to ensure the safety of its customers and staff.

“Our employees have a strict sanitation policy. After each hour, we clean every part of the store including carts, handles, checkstands, and walls. Overall we have sanitized a ton to create a safe and clean environment for the customers,” said Kenny, the manager of the Day Creek Stater Brothers.

Stores everywhere in our city have had to take similar precautions.

“Now we wipe down every door handle every 30 minutes, all high touch points like the keypads for the checkstands, cart handles- we have staff wiping down carts after every single customer uses it,” said Ralphs manager Mark.

Grocery stores aren’t the only businesses that have undergone significant change. In an effort to prevent business from decreasing, places that sell food must take extra precautions to meet the needs of their customers. “We have required all workers to wash hands, wash the tables so they can be clean. We wash everything that we can. After every single use and every single thing that goes out to the table has always been sanitized,” said Nicole, Island’s manager.

Many may believe that business has decreased due to the pandemic, and that people are not wanting to leave their houses. However, the amount of business stores has actually increased dramatically since the virus began. 

“People are staying at home and cooking instead of going out to restaurants, so there has been an increase in the number of customers,” said Kenny, Stater Brothers manager. 

“It started off with paper goods. That was the immediate rush that everyone was buying – toilet paper, paper towels. And now it’s a lot of canned vegetables-stuff like that, frozen goods,” said Mark, Ralph’s manager. 

However, not all businesses have seen an increase in sales. A lot of businesses have been struggling to maintain business and staffing before the world turned upside down. 

 “No, there has not been an increase. In the beginning when there was only takeout, there was an increase  and people were not able to come to the restaurant. But not really anymore,” said Nicole from Islands.

Many restaurants have been hit hard by the pandemic and the mandatory closures and measures that followed. But most grocery stores, like Ralph’s, have not been hit with the same effect. In some cases, the grocery stores have actually seen an increase. 

Ralph’s manager, Mark stated, “We’ve had to limit people- initially we are now operating 50% more than before.”

Businesses across the nation have dealt with challenges and requirements to keep their business open since the pandemic began. Time will tell if our regular routines will return or if this new normal is indeed normal. 

“This is a challenge for everybody. We are waiting to see what’s going to happen as we head into the holiday season,” said Mark.