Loblaw stores reducing hours amid COVID-19 pandemic

Real Canadian Superstore on Walker Rd. in Windsor. (Photo by Adelle Loiselle)

A major supermarket chain is taking steps to reduce the spread of COVID-19 within its stores.

A message posted on Thursday by Galen Weston of Loblaw Companies Limited, states that stores will be reducing their hours and taking steps to allow for social distancing.

Effective immediately, store hours will be reduced to allow for extra sanitization time and downtime for employees. Supermarkets will be open from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m., however, the first hour will be dedicated to allowing seniors and those with disabilities to shop.

Shoppers Drug Mart will also have reduced hours, but times will vary by locations.

Customers are also encouraged to use debit or credit cards to limit the amount of hand-to-hand touching between a customer and an employee.

Stores will also start to limit the number of customers allowed in during busy hours. The number will vary at each location and will be determined based on the store’s size.

To further ensure social distancing, locations will only use every other checkout line when possible.

Shoppers will no longer find samples or beauty testers either, as those have been removed.

“Some of these concepts may not work as intended. If they don’t, we will adjust to get them right. But, we believe they are essential,” said Weston.