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Dorian spoils food supplies at some P.E.I. businesses

From left, Miranda Lowther, Lois Craswell, Katelyn Craswell and Stephanie Leavitt taking a happy and relieved selfie in front the reefer truck provided by Atlantic Beef Products. It helped them save much of their stock after the power outage caused by Dorian. Photo by Lois Craswell
From left, Miranda Lowther, Lois Craswell, Katelyn Craswell and Stephanie Leavitt taking a happy and relieved selfie in front the reefer truck provided by Atlantic Beef Products. It helped them save much of their stock after the power outage caused by Dorian. Photo by Lois Craswell - Contributed
ALBANY, P.E.I. —

Going to work on the weekend in the aftermath of a hurricane isn’t likely to be fun.

Especially if you’re Lois Craswell.

Sunday, the manager at the Handpie Company in Albany arrived to find one of their coolers sitting at an uncomfortable 10 C.

Refrigerated or frozen food must be kept below 4 C, while anything that reaches room temperature for two hours is no longer safe to use or consume, said Darren Leyte of Health Canada.

“In retail situations, they are monitoring temperatures of all their coolers all the time, not just during a power outage, so they track all that information and if they have a problem they’re well aware of it and they know exactly how long things have been outside the temperature guidelines, so they’re actually better equipped than homeowners.”

Power went out at Saturday night around 9 or 10 p.m., so Craswell knew the food was unsafe, she said.

“We had to dispose of three batches of filling, which is equivalent to probably…closer to 600 to 800 pies.”

A rough estimate puts the total loss of sales above $6,000.

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 MASSIVE #AlbanyProud high-fives to our pals over at @abpibeef for coming to our absolute rescue today with this...

Posted by The Handpie Company on Sunday, September 8, 2019

Though not as substantial, Receiver Coffee Company discarded $100-$150 worth of milk and cream at its Victoria Row location, said co-owner Chris Francis.

“We had to throw out maybe 16 250-ml containers. We were really lucky we didn’t lose more.”

Meanwhile, Cows locations Islandwide were in the clear, including the Cavendish Beach boardwalk, which still had no power as of the afternoon of Sept. 9., said vice-president Chad Herron.

“On P.E.I. I think we did fairly well. We were able to run the inventories low and then take stuff back. We had a truck on the go, moving things around.”

Their waterfront Halifax location wasn’t so lucky, with staff still not able to enter to assess damages and losses, he said.

For Craswell, things would have been a lot worse without Atlantic Beef Products.

“Atlantic Beef kind of came to our rescue. They offered to give us one of their reefer trucks.”

This meant employees spent a chunk of Sunday moving product from powerless freezers into the diesel-powered truck’s freezer.

On Monday, Craswell was undeterred, though the Handpie Company delayed opening to move things back into the building and start restocking supply.

“We gotta keep on keeping on. There’s no stopping.”

While there may be one or two flavours in short supply in the coming days, Craswell expects operations to return to normal within the week.


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