OK Produce was one of the vendors greatly affected by the loss of refrigeration. (Mark Henninger/Imagic Digital)

💡 Get Philly smart 💡
with BP’s free daily newsletter

Read the news of the day in less than 10 minutes — not that we’re counting.

Roughly a quarter of the shops in Reading Terminal Market were hit with a power outage Wednesday that could last for up to two days.

A cheese shop and a produce vendor have been forced to shut down until repairs are completed, according to Alex Styer, a spokesperson for the market, because they rely so heavily on refrigeration.

“Downtown Cheese, unfortunately, that would be the big loser, if you will — all that delicious cheese,” Styer said.

A representative from O.K. Produce confirmed the stand was in the process of shutting down Wednesday afternoon. Altogether, Styer said 17 stands were affected by the outage, including Pearl’s Oyster Bar, Famous 4th Street Cookie Co., Termini Brothers Bakery, Mueller Chocolate Co., Old City Coffee, Sang Kee Peking Duck, Kismet Bialys, and Butcher’s Pantry.

The outage happened a little before 3 p.m. and is affecting the southwest corner of the Center City market and food hall, near the corner of 12th and Filbert streets, per Styer. 

Founded in 1893 and considered one of the nation’s oldest and largest public markets, Reading Terminal draws over 100,000 visitors a week and has about 80 merchants. They offer a huge variety of products, from made-to-order meals to grab-and-go snacks to groceries, candies, clothing, and crafts. 

Luckily for Bassetts Ice Cream, which has maintained a counter at the market since it opened, the outage did not affect its freezers, per Styer. 

According to Styer, the outage was caused by an electrical transmission problem that will take one to two days to repair. PECO spokesperson Madison Davis told Billy Penn the problem is internal to the market and does not involve the utility’s equipment.

Styer said the rest of the market remains open and is operating as usual.

“We’re hoping it’s one to two days for these particular 17 stores,” Styer said. “Sorry to our lovely cookie company and Termini brothers, but they’ll be okay. They’ve got other locations.”

Meir Rinde is an investigative reporter at Billy Penn covering topics ranging from politics and government to history and pop culture. He’s previously written for PlanPhilly, Shelterforce, NJ Spotlight,...