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London Drugs making space for fitness businesses hit by COVID-19 restrictions

Fitness businesses and individuals can apply to have their products or services promoted in-store and online
London Drugs Ironwood
Fitness businesses and individuals can apply to have products or services promoted in-store on online at London Drugs, under the Richmond-based company's Local Central initiative.

One Richmond-based company is lending a hand to fitness industry operators and small businesses hit by B.C.’s latest round of COVID-19 restrictions.

London Drugs is making space under its Local Central initiative for health and wellness-focused items and services, after gyms, fitness centres and dance studios were forced to close under the latest restrictions.

“When it comes to mental and physical well-being, there’s no room for compromise,” said London Drugs president and COO Clint Mahlman, in a statement.

“As we continue to navigate restrictions together, we look forward to discovering how we can best support the fitness industry within the communities we live and operate.”

Members of the fitness industry — including businesses and individuals — can fill out an online application with the products and services they can provide, which can be promoted in-store and online at London Drugs, with 100 per cent of all sales going back to those businesses or individuals.

According to London Drugs’ website, the health or fitness-related businesses or individuals must be based in B.C., Alberta, Manitoba or Saskatchewan. Businesses must have a valid Canadian business license or permit.

There are several requirements for products submitted to Local Central, for example, edible items must be packaged, shelf stable and approved by Health Canada with nutritional facts outlined. Cannabis, tobacco or alcohol products aren’t allowed.

Items such as clothing with business branding are accepted, however, gift cards or certificates are not.

Services, meanwhile, must be recorded, virtual or in line with any current provincial or municipal COVID-19 restrictions.

London Drugs previously launched similar “Local Central” initiatives for restaurants and local businesses impacted by the pandemic. 

“We are fortunate to be able to provide an area in-store to communicate local health and wellness options, including products, merchandise, and to communicate related services to our customers, with 100 per cent of the proceeds again going directly to local businesses and individuals,” Mahlman said.

Since the Local Central initiative was announced in April 2020, more than 1,200 Western Canadian companies have submitted products for consideration, according to the company’s website.