Flooding means unpredictability for businesses

Outdoor gear and restoration businesses are thriving while bakeries are struggling with supply shortages

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By Clarissa Kurniawan

For Lower Mainland businesses, recent weeks have been sink or swim.

Blaine Booth’s business is home flooding repair, and in the past few weeks, he’s been very busy.

Business is booming

Booth is the director of sales marketing at EPIC Restoration Services, a Surrey company which helps people repair their homes and businesses damaged by flooding and other disasters.

“Our phones are ringing off the hook. Two weeks ago on Monday, we’ve seen as many calls that day as we typically see in like a month. It was just that busy,” Booth said.

He said business is increasing. “[It’s at] the point where they have to make an investment on new equipment and resources in order to fulfill the demand for our services.”

Many shoppers are buying rain gear, according to Rebecca Schutte, a store learning assistant at Mountain Equipment Company in Vancouver.

“I have seen a great increase due to the storm, as they are looking for highly waterproof gear, so we have had a lot more inquiries and purchases on rain gear,” Schutte said.

While many Lower Mainland businesses are thriving off the bad weather, other businesses are struggling with the broken supply chain.

Vadim Mugerman, the owner of Bad Dog Bread in North Vancouver, said that because the roads were closed, they can’t get all the bakery supplies they needed. Grain and eggs are the hardest to get.

Mugerman has been trying to find other sources for the grain but is still struggling with the problem of closed roads.

Struggle for bakeries

“We are still okay, but we need to find new sources and adjust some of our recipes,” Mugerman said. “I think for another month we will be okay, but if it’s going further, then it will worsen. We will be able to make bread for at least one to two months, but after that, that could be an issue.”

Natalie Vo, a baker at Pane e Formaggio on Main Street, said that the rainy weather has affected the number of customers coming to the shop.

“We bake fresh every morning, so now with less customers, we had to throw away some food at the end of the day,” she said.

Vo added that the lack of delivery is hurting their business.

“We’re currently having a shortage of supplies. Like today, we didn’t have enough ingredients for making scones, so we don’t sell them now.”

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