Grocery stores prepare for busiest day of the year

File photo of inside a Stew Leonard's

NEWINGTON, Conn. (WTNH)– When you think about last minute Christmas shopping, you probably think about toy stores, department stores and maybe the mall, but the real holiday rush is at your local grocery store.

Wednesday is the busiest day of the year for stores like Stew Leonard’s, according to Meghan Bell, the director of public relations for Stew’s.

“Twice the number of people will be shopping tomorrow, December 23rd, than we would see on an average sales day,” said Bell.

A lot of those shoppers head straight for the meat section, where this week, they’ll sell 100,000 pounds of filet mignon alone. Christmas week is so big, they call for all hands on deck at Stew’s.

“A lot of folks who sit in the offices will be down on the floor helping customers,” Bell explained. “So the person bagging your groceries might actually be someone who works in our accounting department, or the person helping you at the catering desk might be someone that works in public relations.”

In the bakery, workers were in at three this morning to get all the bread and rolls ready for the crowds. If you have a lot of shopping to do for your Christmas meals, you might want to set your alarm, too.

“If you’re coming to Stew’s, we suggest you shop early,” Bell said. “We’re going to be opening our doors at 7 a.m. today, tomorrow, and Christmas Eve, but we won’t be here on Christmas Day.”

So what are some of the big sellers this holiday week? On these last few days before Christmas, Stew Leonard’s expects to sell:

250,000 clementines
5,000 pounds of cherries
10,000 pounds of coffee beans
100,000 sticks of butter
10,000 gallons of egg nog
50,000 pounds of ham
10,000 pounds of mozzarella
4,000 pies
5,000 pounds of pistachios
10,000 bottles of olive oil
20,000 pounds of shrimp
100,000 pounds of filet mignon

Today and tomorrow, Santa himself will be at Stew’s in Newington.

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