Q & A with Stewart’s Shops spokesperson on maintaining clean stores and services during pandemic


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Stewart’s Shops are an essential business and many people continue to frequent the stores all across the Capital Region. For many, it’s the closest grocery option.

On Friday, Erica Komoroske, a spokesperson for Stewart’s, shared some of the steps they’re taking to maintain a safe and clean environment for their customers.

“We appreciate the opportunity to let the Capital Region know the diligent efforts we are making during this health crisis to keep our Partners and customers safe and healthy,” said Komoroske.

Below are a list of questions News10 asked and the responses from Komoroske:

Q: Are you supplying your employees with masks now that it is mandatory that everyone must wear them in public?

A: “In compliance with Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order, all of our partners have been supplied with a washable mask and every shop has disposable masks available. We are shipping out additional washable masks to each shop to ensure that each Partner has 2 masks by next week. Some of our Partners have gotten crafty and made their own Stewart’s branded masks. In addition, signs have been posted to ask our customers to wear masks or face coverings before entering our shops. Gary Dake, our president, created a contest for Partners to create their own mask in a Stewart’s branded and creative way. The winner will be chosen by him and will win a prize. Partners are having fun with the initiative and we are seeing some great masks come in!,” said Komoroske.

Q: Are you supplying your employees with hand sanitizer/antibacterial soap? Or are you requiring them to bring their own?

A: “We supply all of our Partners in our 336 shops with hand sanitizer, anti-bacterial soap and gloves,” said Komoroske.

Q: Have you looked into purchasing plexiglass shields to put between the cashier and the customer?

A: “We are in the midst of placing orders for plexiglass shields and we hope to have them in most of our shops by the end of next week,” said Komoroske.

Q: Are you continuing to offer self-serve coffee stations? If so, how is that considered safe with many hands touching the coffee pots/creamers/stirrers? 

A: “We offer both full service and self service coffee for our customers. Upon request, our Partners will prepare the customer’s coffee. Our Partners follow CDC guidelines and routinely sanitize all high touch areas in our shops, which includes our coffee counter, coffee pots and handles, and the creamer and sugar station,” said Komoroske.

Q:  Are you changing any other operations within your stores to adhere to CDC guidelines to make sure the stores are a safe/clean environment?

A: “We follow a strict CDC sanitation and cleaning directive, sanitizing and cleaning all high touch areas routinely. Our seating areas have been closed; and our hot food crock program and hot dog offerings have been suspended. We continue to evaluate, adapt and implement policies and procedures to keep our customers and Partners safe and healthy,” said Komoroske.

Q: How are you managing/policing long lines? 

A: “Our shops have signs posted asking customers not to congregate and to respect the six foot social distancing guidelines. Our Partners use their best judgement to keep lines minimal and enforce social distancing. We are all in this together and trust that our customers and Partners will take the necessary steps to protect each other during this difficult time,” said Komoroske.

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