Grocery stores

California Department of Social Services Releases Guidelines for Providers Requesting Stores to Waive Supply Limitations Due COVID-19

With the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) causing increased bulk purchasing of items, many stores across California have placed purchasing limitations on certain items. The California Grocers Association (CGA) represents hundreds of stores across California including Costco, Vons, Safeway, Albertsons, Raley’s, Ralphs, Whole Foods, Smart and Final, and others.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic the CGA has advised their stores to designate an employee such as the store manager or manager on duty, to handle bulk order requests. Additionally, stores are being advised to post signs at entrances or other prominent locations notifying customers of any requirements needed to fulfill bulk orders.

The following are best practices for providers to consider when planning a trip to the grocery store:

  • Check the store’s website for information regarding store policy for bulk purchasing, including documentation and verification needed, etc.
  • Call Ahead: Contact customer service for the store and explain that you are a PIN 20-08-CCLD Page Two licensed facility in need of placing a bulk order for supplies for your clients. Verify if they have a policy in place to allow this and confirm what you will need to do to make your bulk purchase.
  • At the Store: Look for signs or notices at the store entrances or prominent locations that provide the store’s procedures for obtaining bulk orders.
  • Bring a copy of your facility license to the store as verification for your unique need (e.g. you can take a picture of your facility license as an option). You can inform them that they can also verify your license at our website.
  • Online Ordering & Delivery Options: If visiting a store in person is not a viable option, many retailers also offer delivery and online ordering through their website or third parties.
  • Alternative Suppliers: Reach out to local farms, restaurants, bakeries and other businesses who may be offering supplies during this time. Some restaurant chains like Panera and Subway have converted to operate as grocery stores to stay in business and support communities.

Additional Resources
California Grocers Association
California Grocers Association: retailers special shopping hours
International Foodservice Distributors Association

Please continue to monitor the CCLD homepage for updated information regarding COVID-19. If you have any questions regarding this PIN, please contact your local Regional Office at the following applicable link:
Adult and Senior Care Program Regional Offices
Child Care Program Regional Offices
Children’s Residential Program Regional Offices