Publix expanding store hours, suspends reserved shopping times

Publix announced their stores will be expanding their hours as the country continues the process of reopening amid the coronavirus pandemic. 

Starting Saturday, May 16, stores will be open daily from 7 a.m.  to 9 p.m. The pharmacy will be returning to regular operating hours. 

“Thank you for your patience over the past several weeks while we’ve operated under reduced hours,” the company website wrote. 

The stores had adjusted their times to 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. to allow extra time for cleaning and sanitizing. 

Publix also announced that they are suspending their reserved shopping hours. The Lakeland-based company had previously set aside certain hours for senior citizens and frontline workers to shop. 

"We do understand some customers prefer to shop when the stores are less crowded. We encourage you to shop during the first hour of the day, when we can better accommodate that need."

RELATED: Publix donates 1M pounds of produce, 100K gallons of milk to help farmers, families during pandemic

Publix has been taking steps to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. The stores installed plexiglass barriers at cash registers and implemented one-way aisles. No word on if or when those safety measures will be removed.

The company recently announced that they purchased more than 1 million pounds of fruits and vegetables and more than 100,000 gallons of milk to donate to Feeding America member food banks.