NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Some supermarket chains are now limiting how much meat shoppers can purchase during the coronavirus pandemic.
Kroger, the nation’s largest supermarket chain, is limiting meat purchases at some stores, citing the rash of closures at slaughterhouses due to outbreaks of COVID-19 among workers at the facilities. Kroger, which operates hundreds of stores in Texas, has not said how many of its locations would curb customer purchases of beef and pork.
Warehouse chain Costco is also temporarily restricting purchases of beef, pork and poultry products, limiting members to three items.
“Costco has implemented limits on certain items to help ensure more members are able to purchase merchandise they want and need,” the company stated on its website.
At least one fast-food restaurant chain — Wendy’s — has taken burgers off the menu at some locations. On Monday only chicken items were available for takeout and delivery at some locations in California, South Carolina and Kentucky.
The move is extreme for Wendy’s, a restaurant that established itself as the first fast-food chain to offer fresh ‘never frozen’ beef.
In a statement the company said —
“Some of our menu items may be in short supply from time to time at some restaurants in this current environment. We expect this to be temporary, and we’re working diligently to minimize the impact to our customers and restaurants.”
Production of beef and pork is reportedly down some 25% with coronavirus outbreaks sickening thousands of workers at meat processing plants in Texas and across the country.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 4,000 workers at 115 meatpacking plants have been infected with the coronavirus. More than a thousand of those cases are in Texas — mostly in the Amarillo area where 25% of the nation’s fed beef supply is processed.