More strain on supply for Calgary stores as floods hit B.C.

With local grocers already feeling the impacts of a strained supply chain thanks to COVID-19, empty shelves could become a reality in Calgary grocery stores following massive floods in B.C.

“Distributors and warehouses are all out in B.C., Vancouver area, the Lower Mainland,” explained Matthew Penner, the Category Management Lead at Community Natural Foods.

“A lot of our dry goods, produce would be coming through there in a big way. Dairy, supplements, really a lot of our supply chain passes through the B.C. area.”

The catastrophic storm led to mudslides in the province’s lower mainland, which has shut down both highway and railway transportation.


With most of Alberta’s supply passing through the west, Calgarians should be prepared for higher prices and even shortages of some items at the grocery store.

“All of the highways, west to east have been impacted by the floods. (They) have already and it will continue to impact our supply chain. We need at least one highway open and things will improve from there, but it will be a tricky week for us,” said David Jannard, the Store Manager at Blush Lane in Marda Loop.

It may remind some of the beginning of the pandemic when Calgary grocery stores saw empty shelves due to supply chain disruptions.

“Those are still ongoing, they were certainly more acute at the beginning, the first 30, 60 days of COVID. Things have normalized to a great degree,” said Jannard.

“Sales and volume went way up and we had to really correct how we were ordering and purchasing for the stores,” said Penner.


According to one expert, these disruptions come at a bad time.

“You might see some products go off this shelf right away, but some products can face the risk and resilience for the next 15 to 20 days,” explained Rajbir S Bhatti, an Associate Professor in Supply Chain Management at the Bissett School of Business at Mount Royal University.

“If they don’t put in immediate effect steps to restore the infrastructure, we might see something severe happening to our stores as well over a period of time.”

However, Jannard is hopeful that the delays will be short-lived.

“I think there will be short term delays on some perishable and non-perishable. As soon as one highway opens, product will start to flow.”

Top Stories

Top Stories

Most Watched Today