Publix says all locations will return to normal operating hours, and will suspend reserved shopping hours starting this weekend.
In a press release sent Thursday morning, the Lakeland-based grocery chain said stores will be open from 7 a.m.-9 p.m. starting Saturday, May 16. Pharmacies will also return to regular operating hours.
“With our newly expanded hours, we will suspend reserved shopping hours,” said the release. “We do understand some customers prefer to shop when the stores are less crowded. We encourage you to shop during the first hour of the day, when we can better accommodate that need."
With today’s announcement, Publix will be one of the first major retailers in Florida to relax standards put in place during the coronavirus pandemic. This is right on brand; the grocery giant was also one of the last to implement safety standards at its stores.
Publix reported $11.2 billion in sales over the first fiscal quarter of 2020, with an estimated $1 billion as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
As of today Florida has recorded a total of 43,210 cases of COVID-19, with 1,948 deaths.This story originally appeared in our sister paper Creative Loafing Tampa Bay.
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