After the pandemic spread of coronavirus forced President Donald Trump to declare America to be in a state of “national emergency,” people across the United States have stormed their local grocery stores to stock up essentials. While toilet paper is the most sought out item, people are panic buying hoards of cleaning supplies, frozen foods, and whatever seems most pressing while practicing “social distancing.”
On Sunday night, world-renowned chef José Andrés visited a local Giant grocery store to show people how hard these employees are working during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Andres showed multiple Giant employees restocking shelves in the wee hours of the morning to prepare for Monday’s doors opening. He tweeted, “Late at night 2:00 and is amazing how on every supermarket, farmers markets Etc women and men like them will work non stop to replenish every shelve. Next to the Medical staff across the world, people like them are and will be heroes to keep humanity fed! Thank them! #CoronaVirus”
“These people are going to be feeding America,’ Andres says in the video. “So, I hope this is an homage to every man and woman helping keep supermarkets full during this moment of uncertainty. Thank you to all of them.”
In 2003, the James Beard Foundation named Andres the Best Chef of the Mid-Atlantic Region and in 2013, became an American citizen. Married to wife Patricia Andres since 1995, he is the owner of ThinkFoodGroup, which manages over 20 restaurants across America.
While Andres applauds the hard-working employees at Giant and grocery stores everywhere, the chef has been doing his part, too. He recently returned from Oakland, California, where he was instrumental in delivering food and hot meals to the 3,500 passengers getting off the COVID-19 infected Grand Princess Cruise ship.
Along with his World Central Kitchen crew, Andres helped serve three meals a day from their Relief Kitchen set up at the University of San Francisco.
Chef Jose Andres Is Turning His Closed Restaurants Into Community Kitchens During Coronavirus
Andres is doing all he can to help out his community during the coronavirus, which in cities like Hoboken, New Jersey, Los Angeles County, and Manhattan have shut down bars and restaurants in precaution.
On March 15, he announced he’d be preemptively shutting down his D.C. area restaurants and called on others to do the same. In a video shared Twitter he explained, “We are doing this for the right reasons. We need to take care of our employees, we need to take care of our guests for their safety, more importantly, we need to take care of every one of you. We cannot just keep going like this is not gonna happen to us.”
“We need to be joining the NBA, need to be joining closings of other venues that are doing the right call ahead of everybody,” Andres urged. “We cannot stay much longer with restaurants open or we will only be part of the problem when we need to be part of the solution.”
Andres, who founded the nonprofit World Central Kitchen to provide food to those in areas struck by tragedy and natural disasters, is now turning his own restaurants into community kitchens during coronavirus. They will have take-out window for people to safely pick up food.
COVID-19 is going to have a disastrous effect on the restaurant industry but Andres wants people to focus on the positives in the long term.
Andres said, “I’ve been here 26 years moving this company forward and plan to be here 25 more years ahead, and I know I will only be able to do this with the men and women next to me. We’re going to be finding every way to be next to them to make sure that together we go through this complicated time.”