In the four-week lockdown which comes into play from Wednesday midnight, only retailers which qualify as an ‘essential business’ are allowed to stay open. Most retailers who aren’t supermarkets don’t make the cut, including liquor stores, but in Licensing Trust Areas such as West Auckland’s Portage and Waitakere, they’re allowed to continue trading. We asked The Trusts to share details about how they’ll keep their liquor stores open.
The Trusts represents Portage and Waitakere together. It operates just under 30 liquor stores under brands including West Liquor and Village Wine and Spirits.
Joint acting chief executive Matt Williams shared more information about what The Trusts’ liquor stores will be selling during lockdown, and how it’ll keep customers and workers safe.
Can you tell us how The Trusts expect their supply chains to hold up during the lockdown?
Our responsibility is to serve and support our West Auckland community first and foremost. If we find that we cannot do that adequately or safely then we will take immediate steps to rectify.
We will have a limited range available and don’t expect there to be any issues.
Part of our management of this is changing how we do business for the next four weeks to protect the health and safety of our team members and customers.
We will be using a fully contactless method to take orders and payment for customers, and then arrange a time frame for them to collect their order from one of our stores.
Will the full range of products be sold?
A limited range will be available, with some beer, spirits and RTDs available as well as wine. It won’t be the same range that people are used to, but we will be doing our best over the next four weeks.
Will WestLiquor online be permitted to sell nationwide during the lockdown?
We are not looking into distributing nationwide during alert level four.
How will The Trusts keep staff and shoppers safe while stores are open?
The health and safety of our team members and our customers is our highest priority. Before Thursday 26 March, we introduced a number of measures to limit contact and keep proper physical distance between people.
From Thursday 26 March we will be moving to a fully contactless method of trading.
All customers will need to place their order via telephone or email. This is the only way people will be able to purchase from us.
Customers will be given a pick-up timeframe and store location for later collection. On arrival at the store, a duty manager will check ID through the glass. Once approved, the duty manager will open the doors, deposit the order and return inside the store. After this, the customer will be able to collect their order.
No orders will be accepted at stores, and security will present to manage queues and to ensure that people maintain at least a two-metre distance from each other.
Additionally, team members will be required to keep proper physical distance from each other, will be asked to wash their hands regularly and clean stores, including disinfecting Eftpos terminals.