Area grocery shoppers feel impact of Hurricane Harvey

By  | 

(KWTX) If you’ve been to an H-E-B store in Central Texas you may have noticed some bare shelves and the popular San Antonio-based grocery says that’s because much of its business has been affected by Hurricane Harvey.

A cold foods case Tuesday at one Waco area H-E-B. (Courtesy photo)

“It’s just been a double whammy,” said Leslie Sweet, director of public affairs at H-E-B.

“Our bread plant closed in Corpus and that was closed initially with all our stores in the Gulf Coast,” Sweet said.

“And then, we reopened those as soon as we could, but clearly when we have a store close it disrupts others.”

H-E-B has distribution centers in the Houston and San Antonio, areas and some of them were significantly affected by flooding after the hurricane made landfall.

Thirty-two stores in the greater-Houston area remain closed.

In the Gulf Coast area, stores in Aransas Pass, Refugio and Rockport are shut down.

On top of that, evacuees are shopping at stores in areas that haven’t been directly affected by the hurricane.

“We’ve got the floods and now we have more demand with families evacuated out of that area,” Sweet said.

H-E-B, meanwhile, has mobilized its company to help with the disaster, sending a convoy of more than 15 vehicles to deliver supplies to areas hardest hit.

H-E-B’s disaster relief units and H-E-B mobile kitchens have worked around the clock serving more than 8,000 meals and providing supplies to people in need.

The team plans to serve more than 2,000 additional meals to those in the Rockport area Tuesday afternoon.

Late Tuesday the company tweeted, “Houston, 86K bottles of water are en route to the Convention Center!”

The company also announced it’s donating $100,000 to relief efforts and will start accepting customer donations for the families and communities devastated by the storm through a statewide tear pad campaign.

As for when the grocery store shelves will be fully stocked again in Central Texas, Sweet says, that will depend on Mother Nature.

You can keep up with store closures and information on how you can help H-E-B with recovery efforts on the company’s website.