The Government should review the framework that determines which grocery services can open during lockdown so our communities don’t struggle with access to vital food supplies, National’s Economic Development and Small Business spokesperson Todd McClay says.
“With New Zealand now in lockdown there continues to be uncertainty about what is and is not considered an essential service, and it’s important that this is clarified quickly.
“National MPs have been contacted by people concerned about not being able to shop at their local butcher or fruit and vegetable store.
“We are calling on the Government to revisit the limited opening of butchers and fruit and vegetable stores, particularly in smaller communities that might not have access to other food services.
“Many people live relatively close to supermarkets but choose to do their weekly shop at local butchers and greengrocers because of the unique products they sell. This is especially true of our ethnic communities who tend to shop at speciality stores.
“Allowing them to trade in the same way as dairies during the lockdown makes sense. This will give certainty to people as they grapple with the new restrictions.
“Health and safety is paramount but we also need to ensure people can access essential supplies within their community and don’t have to travel further than necessary.”