How Avenida Food Hall & Market is dealing with COVID-19

Casa Corazon: Mary Lyn poses at Avenida Food Hall & Market on June 6. She works at Casa Corazon, a shop that sells accessories, hand bags and T-shirts. (Photo by Sakshi Bindra/The Press)

Avenida Food Hall and Fresh Market opened in southeast Calgary in 2018, and is based on a food hall concept.

It is a place to buy fresh fruits and vegetables and other food and goods. While Avenida Food Hall and Fresh Market stayed open throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, businesses inside are seeing a major slowdown. They also had to adopt many new precautions to protect customers.

At the market, nearly 40 vendors offer food, beer, accessories for women and a play centre for children. It is great place to go and enjoy the surroundings and social atmosphere. People can have the opportunity to eat foods from all over the world at the Market.

It stayed operating as a market provider throughout the pandemic, providing essential services like food and groceries.

“We are a hybrid of a food hall, which are very popular in Europe and [the] United States, and farmers’ markets,” said Yuval Greenfeld, general manager at Avenida Food Hall and Market.

“We have social distancing measures throughout the facility, as well as we are doing increased cleaning and sanitation of all touch surfaces. So we’re doing way more cleaning and a lot more attention at the high touch surfaces,” he said.

According to him, they have had a huge drop in people coming in, due to COVID-19, as people aren’t allowed to sit and eat. They changed the model into delivery or pick-up.

“So the sales have went down dramatically and some businesses have went under, sadly because of it, of course, but we’re doing the best that we can, we’re trying to keep positive of course, and keep our customers as safe as we can with plexiglass and everything else.”said Justine Footit, customer service representative at the market.

Her job is to guide delivery workers or anyone who doesn’t know where to go, to give information about gift cards, and to provide masks and sanitizer to people.

According to her, due to COVID-19 the food hall is doing a lot more take-out and people are eager to support local businesses. She is happy to welcome customers who follow proper social distancing measures to have a safe and clean atmosphere in the market.

Footit said the market reduced its hours during the pandemic but will soon return to its normal operating hours.

Customer Service: Justine Footit poses at Avenida Market on June 6. Footit is a customer service representative who provides information about Avenida Food Hall and Market. (Photo by Sakshi Bindra/The Press)