In the wake of recently issued Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines advising that the COVID-19 virus can be spread through the air, Lidl US will install air filtration systems rated MERV 13 or higher, typically found in hospitals, in all of its U.S. stores by the end of 2020.
“Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have worked diligently to protect the health of everyone in our stores by meeting or exceeding CDC guidelines, and this measure to create cleaner, healthier air is no different,” explained Lidl US CEO Johannes Fieber. “Customers and team members in Lidl stores can breathe easier knowing we have an added layer of protection against COVID-19.”
Lidl US is among the first national grocers to install hospital-grade air filtration systems across its entire store network. Epidemiologists and professional associations recommend using high-efficiency air filters MERV 13 or higher to trap small airborne particles that can transmit the virus.
Previously, Lidl stores featured advanced commercially rated MERV filtration systems.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam and Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, whose states are home to multiple Lidl locations, expressed their hearty approval of the move, with Hogan noting, “As we remain vigilant in combating COVID-19 … it is more important than ever for businesses to offer a clean and healthy environment.”
Neckarsulm, Germany-based Lidl operates about 11,200 stores in 32 countries, employing about 287,000 employees worldwide. In the United States, the Arlington, Virginia-based grocer has more than 110 stores in nine East Coast states. The company is No. 96 on the PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2020 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.