Publix Reopens Florida Location Damaged by Hurricane Ian

Grocer donates boxed lunches and basic necessities to community members
Emily Crowe
Multimedia Editor
ecrowe
Publix
Publix has reopened its location in Fort Myers Beach, Fla., following a hurricane last September.

Following severe damage to the Fort Myers Beach, Fla., area caused by Hurricane Ian last September, Publix Super Markets has reopened its location within the city. The store opened its doors again on May 25 amid great fanfare.

During the grand reopening, boxed lunches were given to first responders, volunteers and construction crews who were working to rebuild homes and infrastructure in the area. The grocer also gave insulated bags of basic necessities to residents who visited the store, and donated $5,000 in shelf-stable food, hygiene items, paper products and a Publix gift card to Beach Baptist Church.

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“Our customers and the communities we serve are at the heart of all we do,” said Darryll Yarick, store manager. “As our community continues to rebuild, we are honored and privileged to serve our customers and welcome them back into our store.”

Publix turned the spotlight on Elda, one of its associates at the Fort Myers Beach location who was displaced from her home due to the hurricane. According to the company, her managers were in contact with her throughout the rebuilding process to make sure her needs, and the needs of her co-workers, were met.

“Without the support of my family, friends and co-workers, I’m not sure I would have been able to get back to this point,” Elda said. “Now that the rebuilding process is complete for my family and my Publix family, I look forward to helping my church with additional clean-ups in the community.”

Meanwhile, Publix is hard at work preparing for this year’s hurricane season. The grocer’s pharmacies are aiming to be one step ahead of severe weather by partnering with OrderInsite, which offers a platform for pharmacies to manage, monitor and master their prescription drug inventory. According to OrderInsite, its automated technology lets Publix Pharmacy implement its hurricane action plan at a corporate level so pharmacies in affected regions can focus on customers.

Employee-owned and -operated Publix has close to 1,300 supermarkets in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Tennessee, North Carolina and Virginia. Lakeland, Fla.-based Publix is No. 12 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2023 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America. PG also named the company as one of its Retailers of the Century. 

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