ATLANTA - Some stores have begun designating a shopping time just for the most vulnerable customers during the coronavirus pandemic.
All Whole Foods in the U.S. and Canada have started serving customers ages 60 and older one hour before opening stores to the public, the company said.
On Thursday, the policy will be implemented in all Whole Foods in the U.K. for customers 70 and older.
In a similar effort, Target will be allocating the first shopping hour of every Wednesday for the elderly and customers with underlying health concerns only, the company’s CEO, Brad Cornell, said.
As for Walmart, the major retail chain is offering an hour-long senior shopping event every Tuesday for customers aged 60 or older. This will start one hour before the store opens. Pharmacies and Vision Centers will be open during that time.
Publix is designating Tuesday and Wednesday mornings, 7-8 a.m. as senior hours and will be open for customers age 65 and older. The Publix pharmacy will also open at 7 a.m. on Tuesday and Wednesday to serve the senior population.
Kroger is testing opening its stores for a brief time to senior citizens. The comapny's Smith's Food & Drug Stores division is opening to seniors only from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m.
Winn-Dixie is designating a special shopping hour to seniors and high-risk customers from 8 a.m. 9 a.m., Monday through Friday, in all stores
Other stores like Dollar General and Detwiler's Farm Market have also announced separate shopping hours for the elderly.
Dollar General announced it will dedicate the first hour of shopping to seniors.
Detwiler's said anyone who is 65 or older or is disabled will have the stores to themselves from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m., Monday through Saturday, until further notice.
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According to the CDC, individuals over the age of 65 are at increased risk of complications from the coronavirus. Publix is offering these expanded hours to better support our elder community.