PHOTO CAPTION: As long as there are Soldiers and families in the community, the commissary will continue operations.
June 13, 2013
By Story by Jessica Jacobs
USAG Schweinfurt Public Affairs
SCHWEINFURT, Germany -- How will the commissary change during the closure process, and what products and services will be available to you? As long as there are Soldiers and families within the community, the commissary plans to continue operation, according to the commissary's management here.
Despite changes occurring within the community, the commissary is one service within the garrison that will continue to provide a high level of operation until closure in 2014. Although small changes will be evident as the population decreases, modifications will be proportionate to the reduction of community members, said Thomas Mikell, USAG Schweinfurt commissary manager.
"Until we see sales decrease dramatically, something like 50 percent, there won't be a major change," said Mikell.
One effect as a result of transition is on the commissary workforce. As of June 2013, USAG Schweinfurt has approximately 7,000 community members. By the end of the summer that number is estimated to shrink to about 3,000 people, according to Vern Croley, USAG Schweinfurt's strategic plans officer.
Military spouses make up a portion of the staff and are also required to move due to the mobile military lifestyle. Currently, due to a hiring freeze, Defense Commissary Agency, or DeCA, is unable to refill those positions, relying heavily on local national employees until closure.
While product availability has been a cause for concern in the past, Mikell reminds consumers that stock depends on the transportation of product from the states, which sometimes causes delays. The ability to pre-order products continues to be the best way to ensure availability of the items you desire.
"In my experience with closure, one of the last things to close is the commissary," said Croley
To influence the commissary to better serve you, take the commissary online survey now until August 1. Alternatively, provide commissary feedback either using a customer feedback form at the store or online.