Coronavirus Chronicles: Keith McMurdo, Associated Grocers

Keith McMurdo has stocked plenty of store shelves over the years. He’s an owner-operator with Associated Grocers in Calgary, and specializes in supplying small and mid-sized grocery stores from Saskatchewan to B.C.

It was a scramble to keep up with the demand in late March.

Keith McMurdo, Associated Grocers (Supplied photo)

“I have never seen anything like it,” said the 44-year veteran. “Stores that normally take nine pallets of goods a week now want 25 or more … When my truck shows up, customers start moving in and hoard the new stock again.”

“The warehouse is working 24 hours a day trying to keep up, and the trailers are loaded to the max,” he said. Trailers that would normally hold six deliveries will now carry only two. Small mom-and-pop grocery stores are also receiving the loads in the middle of the night, and handing drivers some meals as thanks.

“I have to say a big ‘thank you’ to the businesses that still allow you to use the washroom and purchase food at the counter,” he added, referring to the A&W in Bonnyville, Alberta, and Basha Donair at the truck stop in Nisku, Alberta.

  • Coronavirus Chronicles tell the trucking industry’s personal stories from the front lines of Covid-19. They are drawn from the ongoing coverage at

John G. Smith is the editorial director of Newcom Media's trucking and supply chain publications -- including Today's Trucking,, TruckTech, Transport Routier, Inside Logistics, Solid Waste & Recycling, and Road Today. The award-winning journalist has covered the trucking industry since 1995.

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