Grocery and retail stores continue delivery services of essential goods only during the lockdown. 

Grocery stores have configured their offerings to provide delivery services of essential goods during the lockdown.

Consumers in various areas around South Africa are able to shop online for essential groceries through delivery applications, despite food delivery services previously being suspended. 

During the lockdown, Talia Phili, 30, continues to operate her private grocery delivery service named Fruvas which was started in 2017. 

According to her “it’s an innovative online fresh produce delivery company providing convenience and healthy food options to our customers”. Which delivers groceries to people in the suburb of Sandton and surrounding areas.

Phili adds that community members are able to order food items from a catalogue of grocery combos, varying in quantity.

She says her most in-demand product is “the “Large Size Freshness” combo which includes all the core essentials comprised of healthy fruits and vegetables at an affordable price.”

The company offers flexibility and “the convenience of having fresh produce delivered straight to their home”.

Loyiso Ngema, 22, and his family recently purchased groceries using Fruvas. He said, “the convenience is great as everyone [at home] with a car usually returns late from work”. So, he is able to still able to get groceries during the day. 

More established food delivery companies continue to provide their services as well. 

In a statement posted on the Mr Delivery app, on April 6, Mr D Food stated that it has teamed up with certified sellers of essential goods for delivery. “Starting today, you can get food, snacks and non-alcoholic beverages delivered from convenience stores and other outlets near you, daily from 8 am – 5 pm,” the statement read. 

In an attempt to enforce social distancing practices, these companies have placed an emphasis on hygiene practices and contactless deliveries.

Speaking to Business Tech on March 27, a Pick n Pay spokesperson said, “We have now implemented no-contact deliveries. When our drivers arrive at your address, they will ring the bell, and stand back. Once you answer the door, your order will be conveniently placed at a safe distance.

Food delivery services, Mr Delivery and Uber Eats have implemented a similar process, as delivery bags will be sanitised regularly and drivers will leave the food package in an area indicated by the consumer.

Speaking to Wits Vuvuzela, third-year, Wits accounting student, Thabo Khanyile, 21, said he would prefer using the delivery service to purchase food supply during the lockdown.

He said, “I don’t feel 100% safe going grocery shopping as there has been a huge increase in the number of people at grocery stores due to panic buying.

Retail store, Game has identified a list of “pantry, personal care and household cleaning items” that consumers may order online. Therefore shopping is not restricted to groceries. However, they enforced quantity limits on units per transaction. 

Information systems honours student, Ayomide Akinkugbe, 23, said, “I feel it’s necessary and helpful for the elderly and those with underlying health conditions who are scared to get essential goods themselves.”

These delivery processes have provided consumers with an option to limit their frequent outdoor movement to stores during the South African Lockdown.

Featured Image: Customer displays the grocery delivery she received from Fruvas on Tuesday, April 14. Photo: Provided. 

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