As the COVID-19 outbreak in Oregon continues to impact the local restaurant market, stories are popping up across the city, from food cart owners giving away free meals to chefs starting Instagram cooking classes. In this new version of AM Intel, we dive into different ways the state’s food service industry has been responding to the global pandemic. For more COVID-19 stories, check out our larger story stream.
As some business owners feel increasingly frustrated with the state’s coronavirus-related restrictions, protest-openings have emerged around the state. Pappy’s Greasy Spoon, a Canby diner, welcomed dine-in customers this weekend in direct defiance of the onsite consumption ban this weekend, saying “to-go meals were not cutting it.” Police arrived at the diner, and the owner agreed to stick to takeout from then on.
This isn’t the first time the state has cracked down on a food business for serving customers: In Cave Junction, the Oregon Liquor Control Commission says the Sportsman Tavern continued to serve customers after the shutdown. However, the owner of the Sportsman denies that the bar served customers unlawfully. Pappy’s Greasy Spoon owner Mike Merrill was fully aware of the prohibition and didn’t deny that he was serving customers; in fact, when police arrived, customers were still in the restaurant, eating. [Canby Now]
In Other News...
Fred Meyer is making COVID-19 testing free for its frontline workers with symptoms or medical need. However, the local grocery worker union — while grateful for the new testing policy — is still fighting for stricter social distancing rules. [KPTV]