Coronavirus: Govt teams up with supermarkets to help those at risk

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The UK government will give supermarkets access to its databases in a bid to prioritise deliveries to elderly and vulnerable customers.This comes after reports from food charities that millions of people in the UK will need food aid in the coming days, unless the government intervenes.
Grocers try to prioritise deliveries for the UK’s most vulnerable shoppers.
// UK government set to aid supermarkets to target elderly and at risk customers
// Tesco boss urges shoppers to leave online delivery slots for the vulnerable

The UK government will give supermarkets access to its databases in a bid to prioritise deliveries to elderly and vulnerable customers during the coronavirus pandemic.

It comes amid reports from food charities that millions of people nationwide will need food aid in the coming days, unless the government intervened.

Online delivery slots from major grocers are booked up weeks in advance due to the pandemic after the PM urged people to stay home except for when purchasing essentials.


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Tesco chief executive Dave Lewis urged shoppers to leave online delivery slots for those unable to leave their homes, including the elderly and those self isolating.

Lewis stated that Tesco was “at full capacity for the next few weeks and we ask those who are able to safely come to stores to do so, instead of shopping online, so that we can start to free up more slots for the more vulnerable”.

Sainsbury’s has been using information from its Nectar loyalty scheme to also try to prioritise older shoppers online.

Supermarket bosses and the government also discussed possible ways to extend their delivery networks such as teaming up with local taxi companies and takeaway delivery businesses.

According to The Guardian, figures produced by the Food Foundation suggest approximately 17 million people fall into the higher risk category for coronavirus due to being elderly, pregnant or having underlying health conditions.

It stated that at least 860,000 people in this category were already struggling to afford enough food before the crisis.

In addition, at least one million of them report always or often being lonely, and therefore may struggle to find people to deliver essentials to their door.

The Guardian also reported that the government was set to team up with foodservice providers Brakes and Bidfood to compile an emergency food parcel scheme, providing essentials to up to 300,000 of the 1.5 million people identified as most in need of assistance.

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5 COMMENTS

  1. Help I am 77 with heart condition and a career for my husband who is 83 years old and has advanced Parkinson’s disease. I can not get any shopping delivery slots and can’t leave my husband on his own (he is chair bound) to get to the shops myself.

  2. Hi my name is Deborah im 44 year old very volunble with learning disabilities. And empily and ashama. With anxiety and depression. I also a single parent to a 10year old that also have anxiety emotionals behaviour problem i have be trying to get weekly shopping on line it been difficult to try to delivery slot and need one free for me do with panicing because i can not get out. Can you help people to sort this out. I getting problems with tesco. Sainsburys. Morristons. Iceland and astra. And i havent got any family to help

  3. I’m 73 old with copd I’ve been told by the government that I qualify for home delivery they said I need to fill in a form on your website but im having trouble finding it

  4. Thousands of people are similarly affected by Sainsbury’s heartless and unconcerned attitude. Meanwhile they make millions without any apparent attempt to invest in more vans / drivers / customer service staff. My advice: if you have Sainsbury’s shares, contact your bank & sell them. Then they’ll be the ones “at risk”. Briefly, there was a phone number you could ring, but it was permanently engaged. Now that’s disappeared. Other supermarkets have risen to the challenge. They have my details via my Nectar card – my age should be sufficient reason for them to be in contact with me, not procrastinate about some government list.

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