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How has COVID-19 Impacted Your Work?

October 2, 2020

Author: Marissa Lustri, MPH, RD, Program Assistant at Nutrition Connections

For the fourth blog in our series, I had the privilege of speaking with Sydney Brennan, a Registered Dietitian (RD) at Sobeys. Sobeys has a team of RDs working in their stores across Canada, spanning from Manitoba to Newfoundland. Prior to COVID-19, Sydney and the other RDs offered in-store nutrition and cooking classes, food demonstrations, one-on-one nutrition counselling, as well as partnered with various community groups and businesses to provide specialized presentations. With the onset of the pandemic, Sydney and her team had to rapidly evolve their nutrition service offerings to allow them to continue to support their customers during an unprecedented time.

Prior to COVID-19, Sobeys RDs delivered programs in community rooms that would have a customer capacity. Once sessions moved virtually, RDs noticed participation increasing – one of the silver linings of the pandemic. Once customers were registered for nutrition programs, they were sent recipes and other resources ahead of time, which in some cases has allowed them to purchase the required ingredients and cook along with the RD in real time. This has been a novel opportunity that was typically not possible when delivering in-person classes.

In addition to providing real time instruction, the virtual classes also allowed for customers and RDs to connect across various provinces. These national customer connections are another positive outcome of virtual program delivery.

Sydney stated that “hosting these cooking and nutrition classes from our own kitchens has brought a sense of relatability to our RD team, which has helped increase the connection with our customers”.

The success of these initial offerings has created a new demand for their team’s nutrition expertise, which has resulted in continued and expanded virtual offerings by Sobeys. Check out the Sobeys Dietitians Facebook Page for a list of virtual events, including virtual classes on heart health, diabetes, nutrition for brain health and more.

Sobeys Dietitians Facebook Page:

If you are interested in receiving event updates sign-up for the monthly newsletter on the Sobeys Pharmacy Page:


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