HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Stores in the RVA area have begun limiting how much meat shoppers can buy due to a shortage across the country. However, one family owned and operated grocer in Henrico County said it’s not rationing meat sales but that they have seen customers stock up more than usual.
At first, there was a rush to buy toilet paper. Now, many stores are seeing customers flock to their meat departments. Tom Leonard’s Farmer’s Market says big or small, no stores are immune to supply chain problems when the suppliers don’t have the product to deliver.
“We can manage pretty much what’s happening,” owner Tom Leonard told 8News, “in a couple weeks it might get a little tighter.”
Leonard said suppliers don’t have the quantity of meat they usually rely on. He said it’s a trickle down effect as meat processing plants operate with fewer staff, if they’re open at all.
“It’s affecting these meat packing places you know they’re not little places that have a few knives and the guys are cutting,” Leonard said. “These are three to five thousand people and they’re shoulder to shoulder when they’re working.”
Leonard told 8News that he’s not limiting how much meat customers can buy but he is seeing some shoppers buy two or three times what they need.
“First thing was the toilet paper and then poof the toilet paper was gone and then all the sudden all the meat,” he explained. “I mean, our meat sales are up 200 percent.”
Despite the high demand for meat, Leonard says he’s selling Mother’s Day fillets at just $9.99 a pound, knowing he could sell the steaks for nearly double the price. During the tough time, Leonard wants to help his customers however he can. He’s even giving employees an “appreciation bonus” for the months of April and May.
“We’re trying to do what we can to help. You know, we’re local we’re trying to do what we can to help our shoppers and the people who do come in,” Leonard told 8News.
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