Grocery stores in Liberty County slowly bouncing back after winter storm

The meat shelves were mostly bare at the Liberty Walmart when photographer Angel Rick Leal took this photo on Wednesday.

Grocery store shelves across Liberty County are looking a little more bare than usual as delivery trucks have been impacted by the winter storm. Bread, milk and water – three of the most in demand items in any natural disaster – are scarce for now, but managers of local stores say that things should begin to return to normal by Friday.

“Trucks haven’t been able to get through,” said Tim Hughes, a spokesperson for Cleveland Walmart.

The Cleveland Walmart store was impacted by a power outage, which made it impossible to regulate the temperature of meats, butter, sour cream, yogurts, juices and milks. As a result, the store had to dispose of a lot of items but it is slowly getting restocked, Hughes said.

“We got two pallets of meat in today. I am not sure what is left now,” said Hughes, adding that items are selling very quickly as people try to restock their pantries and refrigerators.

Following is a list compiled of items currently in demand or in stock at major grocery stores in Liberty County, their shortened hours for Thursday and when they expect new shipments to arrive:

CLEVELAND WALMART

The Walmart store in Cleveland will be open on Wednesday until 5 p.m. and on Thursday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The store expects normal hours on Friday.

Items you can find right now: Vegetables (except lettuce), canned goods, cleaning supplies, toilet paper, paper towels, some meats

Items that are not in stock, but should be restocked by Thursday or Friday: Bottled water, bottled propane, dairy products, bread and milk

Trucks are arriving daily but items are selling rapidly. The pharmacy is open limited hours.

Water shelves at the Liberty Walmart were empty on Wednesday. (Photo by Angel Rick Leal)

LIBERTY WALMART

The Walmart store in Liberty is open Wednesday until 8 p.m. Thursday hours are 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Hours may be shortened due to the availability of staff.

The pharmacy is open during regular store hours.

Trucks with meat and breads arrived Wednesday afternoon and Store Manager Barry Jones said that a milk truck is expected by Wednesday evening.

The store currently is out of bottled water but people can bring their own jugs and fill up at the dispenser located by the dairy section.

The store is receiving shipments every day with three more trucks arriving on Thursday.

BROOKSHIRE BROTHERS – Cleveland location

Store manager Thomas Higgins said that the Cleveland store will close on Wednesday at 5 p.m. and be open on Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. They hope to resume normal hours on Friday.

“We will start getting deliveries on Friday morning. We will have milk and bread available by Friday afternoon and will begin restocking our shelves Friday,” Higgins said.

Like the Cleveland Walmart store, the Cleveland Brookshire Brothers store also lost power but Higgins said staff quickly moved items into the freezers, thus preventing any major losses.

“Our produce section looks good. Our meat case is full and our lunchmeat case is full. I currently have eggs but will run out later today,” Higgins said Wednesday.

Water is scarce currently, but more shipments are expected by Friday evening.

The store has charcoal, but no propane. Gasoline is also available at the fueling station in front of the store.

The Tobacco barn and pharmacy also are open at this time.

BROOKSHIRE BROTHERS – Dayton location

Store manager Jeff Fitzgerald said the store is closing on Wednesday at 5 p.m. and will reopen on Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. They hope to resume normal hours on Friday, but Fitzgerald said that will depend on whether or not his employees can get to work.

“We are operating day to day as far as the schedule goes,” he said.

Currently, the Dayton location is out of milk, bananas and water, but has plentiful supplies of hamburger meat, roasts, chicken and pork.

“We don’t have traditional loaves of bread but we have fresh French bread that was baked in our deli. Everyone has been glad that we have had that on hand,” he said.

On Friday, the store is expected to receive a shipment of perishable items, such as dairy and produce. A grocery load will arrive on Friday bringing dry goods and cases of water. Frozen foods will arrive on Saturday.

Fitzgerald asks for patience as the store restocks to normal levels.

“If someone wants to come when things are the way they normally are, fully stocked, then that will be mid to late next week,” he said. “I recommend people shop early. The later you wait in the day, the less we will have available.”

BROOKSHIRE BROTHERS – Liberty location

Store manager Gary Havard says store hours on Thursday will be 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. with normal hours resuming on Friday.

“We have limited meats right now. We have plenty of chicken and should be getting milk and bread trucks here on Friday morning. The schedule has changed a couple of times because of the road conditions,” Higgins said.

Trucks carrying dry goods should arrive on Friday and another meat truck is expected on Saturday.

Currently, the store has a limited amount of charcoal available.

“We just sold the last bit of bottled water we had. I had 18 pallets of water yesterday but it has quickly sold,” he said.

Toilet paper and paper towels are plentiful, as are lunchmeats, cheeses, French bread and rolls.

The deli and pharmacy inside the store are open to serve customers during regular hours.

THRIFTEE – Dayton

Thriftee will be closing at 5 p.m. Wednesday and open on Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The store currently is out of water, milk, bread and propane. There are limited selections of meat and most produce items are available.

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