Crystal Supermarket Sees Bump in Business, Shares Meat Shortage Concerns
Jim Almsted, owner of Almsted’s Fresh Market in Crystal, says shoppers have settled down since the COVID-19 pandemic began. They still have some difficulties getting hard-to-come-by items like toilet paper, hand sanitizer and canned soup.
“Things have gotten a lot better. People can only store up so much and the panic starts to back off a bit. There may be some financial considerations too, but certainly things have settled down,” said Almsted.
A few weeks ago, there was a line for carts to get into the store. That has diminished too. The store continues to do well, with some shoppers opting for the smaller layout and not having to fight the crowds that persist at large grocery stores.
Almsted says there still some empty spots in store shelves, but not nearly what it once was.
“One of the things people have to keep in mind about our industry is that most things run at 95 percent capacity to help keep costs down,” explained Almsted. “When something happens that disrupts that chain, you start to have problems.”
Fresh Meat Supply Begins to Fluctuate
The fresh meat case at Almsted’s Fresh Market was still fairly full midweek. However, popular types of meat, like ground beef, had limitations.
Almsted says they’ve started to see some difficulties in getting meat, due to COVID-19 impacting meat processing centers. He’s been asked not to advertise fresh meat for next four or five weeks.
“We’ll still have it, but we won’t be able to put it in ads for fear we won’t have enough of it,” said Almsted.
Almsted says the shutdown of processing centers has impacted chicken, beef, and pork.