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LOCAL COVID-19 BUSINESS IMPACT: Didsbury's Cowtown Brewing, AG Foods

DIDSBURY - Cowtown Brewing Company is open for sales and one of many businesses in the area offering perks to frontline workers.

DIDSBURY - Cowtown Brewing Company is open for sales and one of many businesses in the area offering perks to frontline workers.

The downtown operation has eight different craft beers brewed on site and is offering 10 per cent off beer purchases when Alberta Health Services (AHS) workers present their AHS identification.

Owner/operator Bhupinder Gill said they’ve had to make some adjustments including cancelling tastings.

“We’re using gloves all the time and hand sanitizers for us and those coming in,” said Gill. “We’re trying to have less contact, people come in don’t touch my counter. We’re promoting people using debit with the tap.”

Gill said people can also call or text ahead and place an order and the company is now offering delivery.

Grocery stores in the region have continued to be busy during the pandemic, in some cases very busy.

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Like other grocery stories in the region, AG Foods in Didsbury continues to adapt to the growing social distancing steps and still offer a wide range of groceries.

Among the safety measures implemented are increased frequency of disinfecting and sanitizing tills, food contact areas, carts and baskets and frequently touched surfaces.

AG Foods has also implemented cashier glove use with protocols for sanitizing between customers and regular hand-washing routines for all employees.

Physical-distancing protocols have been enacted including floor markers and signs to remind people to leave two metres of space.

Plastic dividers have been installed to provide even more safety for its cashiers.

Manager Greg Poirier said the store is managing to keep up with most of the higher demands thanks to the staff’s hard work.

“All my staff is all supporting us 100 per cent,” said Poirier. “All my part-time staff are out of school so they’re coming in and helping when the (delivery) trucks come in so we can get all the orders up and out quickly.”

Poirier said they’re also seeing twice as many online and phone-in orders.

AG Foods also introduced a $2 per hour premium for staff retroactive to March 8 to recognize and show appreciation for them and their hard work and support of the store's customers.

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