Shelves were being stocked at Princeton’s Save on Foods Sunday, but some staples like canned beans were in short supply. Photo Andrea DeMeer

Shelves were being stocked at Princeton’s Save on Foods Sunday, but some staples like canned beans were in short supply. Photo Andrea DeMeer

Princeton mayor urges calm amid fears of food and supply shortages

“Our grocery store will be receiving regular shipments.”

Princeton Mayor Spencer Coyne issued a statement March 19 urging residents to not panic over food and supplies in the face of the COVID-19 outbreak.

The supply chains to Princeton Save On Foods and other stores continue to operate, said Coyne.

Coyne is urging residents to resist the urge to over-purchase and hoard goods.

“It is important that people only purchase what they would purchase regularly,” he said.

“There is no need to hoard items that are regularly accessible…Please consider others when you are out shopping. Please consider our elders who may need the items that you are purchasing when you take more than you need.”

The Spotlight made four unsuccessful attempts to reach the Save On Foods media relations department over the past few days. Local store managers are not allowed to speak directly to media.

Coyne, however, has been in touch with company officials.

“Save-on-Foods is working diligently to keep stock on the shelves. Please respect others. Respect the employees who are trying to provide the services to the community.”

Related: B.C. declares state of emergency, recalling legislature for COVID-19

Some frustrated customers have taken to Facebook, reporting empty shelves at the town’s only grocery store. Eggs, milk, meat and non-perishables are some of the items that are periodically cleaned out.

“Social media is not helping,” said Coyne.

“It is important to only share information from official information sources.”

There has also been social media speculation that residents from out-of-town are traveling to Princeton to buy food.

“We are receiving an influx of residents as people return from their winter homes. As recreational property owners return to their cabins and as snowbirds return home we will see temporary stresses on our services similar to what our community experiences on long weekends and during the summer,” said Coyne.

“People are concerned that they will run out of basic necessities,” said Coyne. “Working together we are stronger.”

On March 18 Save On Foods issued a press release stating that each day stores will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. for the exclusive access of seniors and people with disabilities.

Related: Princeton RCMP detachment cancels non-essential services

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andrea.demeer@similkameenspotlight.com

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