Working Together Through a World Pandemic

Linda Johnson
Wheatsfield Co-op General Manager

I’m not sure that many of us would have suspected a little more than a month ago how much our lives would change due to the Coronavirus pandemic. But change they have and it is the same story at Wheatsfield. Our business and the store operations have shifted dramatically in the last few weeks as we have worked to maintain our commitment to provide you with the high quality food and other items that you rely on us for.
Besides all of the cleaning and sanitizing to keep the store safe for our staff and customers, we have reduced food production to what can be taken out and created a curbside pickup program that has quickly become the focus of our operation in just a few weeks. A big thank you to Stacey Brown, Store Manager, Melissa Lanphere, Marketing Manager and all of the staff that have worked so hard to put this very successful program in place. We hope the curbside pickup will meet your needs and ensure that you have food as we are encouraged more and more to stay home and only go out to the grocery store or the pharmacy. Staff continue to pick and fulfill online orders for curbside pickup on a daily basis and will begin to do so on Saturdays starting this week as well. As less customers shop in the store on a daily basis, the curbside program is also currently helping maintain hours for staff.
We are trying to navigate the changes to the shopping experience at the co-op thoughtfully as they come. We sincerely thank you for your support and adaptability as things change. Our goal is to continue to provide you with the food and products you expect while supporting our staff and community. We hope you can continue to shop or utilize the curbside pickup option so we can continue to maintain staff hours and operations. Please read the signs in the store to shop safely and maintain social distancing while in the store.
We just finished our bi-weekly payroll today and are pleased to announce that we were able to continue the $2 per hour worked Bonus Hero Pay for the staff that we started during the last pay period in early March. This bonus is so well deserved by our staff who have worked hard to do everything asked of them to keep the Co-op running, even thriving in the midst of these difficult times. Some members and customers have made specific donations to the store to help support this bonus. Thank you for your support of all of our employees who are working hard to serve you!
Another big thank you goes to the members who have sewn masks for staff, especially in light of the news yesterday that everyone should wear masks when out in public. You have given us a measure of additional protection that has been adopted by the staff wholeheartedly!
If you have watched TV at all in the last few weeks you have seen frequent messaging encouraging everyone that we will get through this together. And that is my message as well as I close this update. We are doing everything we can to make sure that you feel well provided for by your co-op in these troubling times. I’m in the store every day and would love to hear from you if you have comments or suggestions. Thank you again for your support.