How to support Vancouver food businesses during the coronavirus pandemic

Mar 13 2020, 3:01 pm

We’re in the midst of a global pandemic due to COVID-19, and things are changing quickly.

For many of us here in Vancouver, our daily routines have been flipped upside-down. Maybe you’re not hitting your local coffee shop every morning because you’re working from home, and perhaps there have been some restaurant reservations you’ve made the decision to cancel.

This is all completely understandable, as it’s the responsible thing to do if you’re unsure. If you do find yourself in need of some grub, we’re asking you to try to support local, as a little goes a really long way for small businesses in times like these.

There are a ton of bakeries, cafes, local grocery stores, and restaurants that are still open and ready to feed you. Here are some ways you can eat delicious things and support the local Vancouver food and beverage scene.

Buy locally made food


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The big-name stores might have the best stock of toilet paper and cleaning supplies, but when it comes to food, you’ve got more options on a local level. Support brands like artisan bakery and four mill Flourist, where you can buy flour, ready-made dough, locally grown beans and dry goods, and bread (which can be sliced and frozen for later), or Cafe La Tana, where fresh pasta and pastries are plentiful. Grocery stores like new-ish spot Fresh St. Market and zero-waste shop Nada offer a ton of brands/goods from BC producers and beyond as well.

There are also many options if you’re looking to stock up on local brews. Perhaps you won’t be spending your weekend brewery hopping as usual, but that doesn’t mean you can’t pop in and grab some to-go cans or bottles to support our craft breweries (just be sure to leave your growler at home).

If you order delivery, make it local


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It’s completely understandable if you aren’t rushing to sit down at a busy restaurant right now, but everyone’s gotta eat, and if you’re ordering in, consider supporting local businesses before big chains if you can.

DoorDash, Uber Eats, Skip the Dishes, and Foodora all have a plethora of local spots on their roster right now, and we expect many restaurants that don’t normally offer takeout/delivery to start offering these services temporarily, so keep an eye on your favourite eateries’ social accounts for announcements.

Keep in mind that if you’re feeling even slightly unwell, you should include a note to your delivery person to leave your grub outside your door as a courtesy to their health.

Buy gift cards and use them later


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If you can’t make it into a spot to eat, consider buying a gift card to use at a later time as an alternative. This is a super simple way to support restaurants, plus, you’ll have something delicious to look forward to down the road.

With coronavirus on the rise, the BC Ministry of Health is reminding individuals who attend events and large gatherings to monitor their health for signs and symptoms of COVID-19. And if you’re not feeling well, they recommend staying home at this time. Also, due to unexpected cancellations, please check the event you plan to attend is still taking place. Keep up with COVID-19 news here.