A Publix Supermarket in North Carolina closed in anticipation of Hurricane Matthew’s arrival.
The day before Hurricane Matthew – the strongest storm to hit the U.S. mainland in nearly a decade – was due to wreak havoc on the East Coast, the Publix Supermarket chain announced that the Publix Foundation was donating $1 million to the American Red Cross for hurricane relief efforts. The Lakeland, Florida-based chain invited customers and store associates to contribute to relief efforts, through additions to shopping bill totals or via donation boxes at checkouts.
Maria Brous, the company’s director of media and community relations, noted that Publix’s customers and associates “have always shown great compassion and generosity toward others; As the grocer of choice in the communities we serve, we are trusted to react quickly and help those affected by tragic circumstances. This devastating disaster hits close to home as we have many associates and their families who have already been and still may be impacted. As we continue to watch Matthew’s path, we encourage our communities to prepare.”
More than 200 of the company’s Florida stores closed as the storm moved parallel to the coast Friday afternoon. Most of its nearly 800 stores in Georgia are far enough inland that they are unlikely to be seriously impacted by the storm, but the company does have a number of stores in the Savannah and Charleston, South Carolina areas, both of which are expected to take serious hits from the storm on the weekend.