Group calls for power outage disaster relief
Aug 19, 2003 12:00 PM, from staff and wire reportsMichael G Sarafa, president of the Associated Food Dealers of Michigan, is calling for $75 million in disaster relief for Michigan’s retail food industry.
“In spite of the great job that DTE Energy did to restore power and our law enforcement officials’ efforts to keep order during the recent power outage, our retail food stores suffered great losses,” Sarafa said.
He maintains that more than $50 million in perishable foods were lost due to lack of refrigeration. Looting also occurred, and many stores lost income because they could not stay open without power. Sarafa said many stores chose to give product away before it spoiled, instead of throwing it away.
“If Gov Granholm is going to seek federal disaster relief, then part of that equation should include the businesses that suffered the greatest losses, which includes the retail food industry,” Sarafa said.
The Associated Food Dealers of Michigan represents nearly 3,000 distributors, retailers, wholesalers, and manufacturers throughout the state.