Restaurants and bars aren’t the only food-centric businesses suffering severe consequences during the coronavirus shutdown—all the vendors they relied on for ingredients and supplies are hurting, too. If you’re able, now is the ideal time to visit your local restaurant supply store.
Doing parts of your household shop at foodservice and restaurant supply stores has always had its perks, but it’s even better now. Not only do restaurant supply stores sell pantry essentials in quarantine-level quantities, they also haven’t been hit nearly as hard as larger grocery chains in recent weeks. You might even score an industrial-size package of toilet paper and some hand soap to go with your 25 pound sack of dried beans—and, as a bonus, your purchase will help a vital business survive a crisis. (It’s not like the Krogers, Walmarts, and Costcos of the world are exactly hurting for business right now.)
If your local store is members-only, you might still be in luck. Some stores are opening their doors to the public during the COVID-19 crisis to keep as many people employed—and fed—as they can. Before you make the trip, check the store’s website or give them a call to see if they’re adjusting their hours or relaxing membership requirements during the crisis.