Due to a national shortage of coins, Kroger is implementing solutions to handle the shortage that is limiting its ability to give out coin change.
According to Allison McGee, corporate affairs manager for Kroger Mid-Atlantic, local stores are allowing three options for customers going through manned lanes who do not have exact change.
Customers have the ability to:
1. Round up to support Zero Hunger, Zero Waste Foundation
2. Pay with a form of payment other than cash
3. Have their coin change loaded as credit toward their next purchase directly to their loyalty card.
According to reports, some Kroger locations across the country have stopped giving out coin change due to the shortage. When asked if the Kroger in Westlake is no longer giving out coin change, the manager on duty said today he was not at liberty to say.
However, a sign at the Westlake location states that coin change will be applied to a customer’s loyalty card.
“Please consider Rounding Up for Zero Hunger Zero Waste, using exact change, or another form of payment,” the sign states. “We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your help.”
A footnote states that change added to loyalty cards cannot be redeemed on orders that include alcohol, tobacco, fuel or pharmacy items.
“Currently our stores are collecting donations for the Zero Hunger/Zero Waste Foundation by allowing customers to round up their order total to the next dollar,” McGee stated. “Kroger’s Zero Hunger/Zero Waste Foundation supports hunger relief efforts across the communities we serve. For customers that choose not to donate, our cashiers will load the coin value due back through their loyalty card. Customers can redeem the amount on their next transaction. The Treasury Department expects the shortage to diminish as more regions of the country reopen.”
According to Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, closures across the country has resulted in less coins in circulation, resulting in banks not having the change to give out to retailers.
Also, measures put in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic has limited the number of coins being produced by U.S. Mint.
“The COVID‐19 pandemic has significantly disrupted the supply chain and normal circulation patterns for U.S. coin,” the Federal Reserve stated in June. “In the past few months, coin deposits from depository institutions to the Federal Reserve have declined significantly and the U.S. Mint’s production of coin also decreased due to measures put in place to protect its employees. Federal Reserve coin orders from depository institutions have begun to increase as regions reopen, resulting in the Federal Reserve’s coin inventory being reduced to below normal levels.”