Food retailers see increased demand in delivery and curbside pickup

More and more shoppers are changing the way they shop with more people using roadside delivery or collection services at retailers as stores adjust to new demand.

Even if stores implement new policies during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as: For example, the requirement of face masks, social distancing, and plexiglass barriers between cashiers and buyers, some people avoid entering the store altogether.

Sheryl Toda, communications director for Foodland supermarkets, said they had hired more drivers and hired staff to help customers shop from home.

Toda said, “Customers want their groceries to be delivered or picked up so they don’t have to come to our stores and we are seeing that the demand for this service has increased tremendously.”

She said they had increased the number of available roadside parking spaces.

At Down to Earth, this retailer has also seen more shoppers using their online market. Sisi Kong, the grocer’s community outreach leader, said she was encouraging people to try the store delivery or roadside pickup, which Governor David Ige is also advocating.

“It’s been a dramatic increase. I’ve actually had the pleasure of filling orders and taking them to roadside customers myself,” Kong said. “In the latest update, Ige mentioned that the delivery or the curb should be promoted so we can have fewer customers in the stores.”

Down to Earth recently partnered with Kupuna Kokua to provide free food to the most vulnerable in the community.

Foodland and Down to Earth also limit the number of customers who can enter at the same time in order to maintain physical distance.

Some grocery stores in the hardest-hit states have switched completely to delivery or pick-up and are no longer letting customers in.

Toda said that this type of model cannot be ruled out as they continue to monitor developments in COVID-19.

Toda said, “This can happen and we want to be ready when we have to. Right now, we’re just trying to expand the service to all of our stores.”

Next week, Foodland Kapolei will add roadside pickup and delivery services, while the Sack N Save Stadium will be expanded to include roadside pickup. Further locations are to be added in the near future.

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