Coronavirus (COVID-19): latest news from around the world

24 June 2020
COVID-19 has caused a monumental shift in consumers’ food and drink habits. Our new Eating In Vs Dining Out report, produced in collaboration with foodservice consultant Peter Backman, explores the impact of COVID-19 on the UK food and drink market and outlines four scenarios for the future. During the pandemic, the boundaries between eating at home and out-of-home, already blurred, have b...
05 May 2020
The food industry is helping shoppers in challenging times As we enter week seven of the lockdown, the food and grocery industry has managed to maintain the supply of food and drink following the spike in demand in March. Traffic at food retail stores reached levels rarely seen before, outpacing peak trading periods including holidays and special shopping events. Sainsbury’s recently rep...
17 April 2020
In this article, updated daily, we summarise the latest responses to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in the UK: Multiples update Morrisons offers 10% discount to NHS staff: From Thursday, NHS staff will be entitled to a 10% discount when shopping at the retailer's stores. The scheme will last until July 12th when it will be reviewed. This latest initiative follows on from Morrisons...
17 April 2020
Walmex (Walmart Mexico) has introduced a new pricing initiative called “Los Esenciales” (The Essentials), which sees 125 essential items sold at their lowest possible prices in order to support the Mexican population during the COVID—19 pandemic. This promotion will feature in all Walmex’s Bodega Aurrera discount banners, which account for more than 2,000 stores across the country. Items will ...
17 April 2020
On 23 March, we reported that all the UK’s largest food-to-go operators had closed their doors after the government announced restrictions to prevent the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) and measures to support businesses during this time. Nearly four weeks later, the news that three of the UK’s most popular chains were re-opening selected stores will have delighted many of their fans (a...
17 April 2020
It is currently hard to know how long coronavirus will be impacting day to day business and shopping behaviour. When looking to plan trade promotions in the medium term we need to consider the volatility and unpredictability of the current climate. Three questions you should be asking are: 1. Why do you want to promote? With many categories and brands seeing record levels of sales duri...
16 April 2020
Waitrose has unveiled a range of measures to help it support its most vulnerable suppliers during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. £200,000 from the Waitrose Foundation Global Fund Some of the measures put in place include a £200,000 purse from the Waitrose Foundation Global fund, which will support its overseas farming communities. The purse is due to be used to convey advice on social...
16 April 2020
In response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, convenience operators are implementing measures to ensure everyone has access to the food and consumer goods products they need. We will continue to update this article as the latest initiatives are announced. Latest from UK Co-op has invested £3m to install thousands of protective Perspex screens at till points in its 2,600 stores, alo...
16 April 2020
The latest release from the British Retail Consortium Retail Sales Monitor (BRC-RSM), shows that UK retail sales fell by 4.3% in March, the largest monthly drop in the history of the measure. While sales in supermarkets saw an exceptional peak in the month, large elements of non-food sales fell away sharply, even before the general shutdown announced on 23 March. Then thereafter many non-food sec...
16 April 2020
Amazon is set to temporarily suspend all non-essential deliveries in the country, as reported by Reuters. Closure of six warehouses The retailer will close its six warehouses in France until at least 20 April, following a court order to limit deliveries to essential products, including food and medical supplies. According to the report, Amazon will use a state partial-unemployment scheme...
16 April 2020
Beauty-products retailer, Sa Sa International, has posted its Q4 results. Group turnover fell 56.5% to HKD892.4m (US$115.1m). Multiples factors impacting turnover The significant decline in Group turnover was partly due to the closure of Sa Sa’s Singapore business. Sales to mainlanders in Hong Kong and Macau fell 80.8%, as consumer sentiment and travel restrictions following Coronavirus (CO...
16 April 2020
Loblaw is providing non-subscribers with temporary access to its exclusive online food content platform, PC Insiders Project. Subscription-based service Loblaw has temporarily unlocked the exclusive content site that it has developed for members of its PC Insiders initiative, a subscription-based service. Launched nationally in 2018, this provides members with access to a range of perks, in...
16 April 2020
Whole Foods Market has closed one of its key New York stores to enable it to fulfil Prime grocery deliveries. Developed to meet needs of city workers and tourists The Bryant Park store , located in central Manhattan, is one of the retailer’s busiest in the city, alongside neighbouring stores at Columbus Circle and Union Square. Opening in late 2016, the store was one of the first to in...
16 April 2020
US retail sales fell 8.7% in March, compared to a month earlier. We look at how this breaks down across different sectors and the outlook going forward. Non-food sales see significant drop Given the mandated stay-at-home measures and voluntary closures by most retailers, due to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, the decline in sales was expected. Year-on-year, retail sales fell 6.2%. A se...
16 April 2020
We bring you the latest news on how retailers and suppliers are coping with the challenges of COVID-19 in Germany. We will continue to update this article with the latest initiatives. Ten-point plan for retail The German Trade Association has laid out a plan for a gradual return to normality. It includes measures to support small businesses, stimulate consumer spending, adjust labour l...
16 April 2020
The German Trade Association has laid out a plan for a gradual return to normality, as the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues. 1. Non-discriminatory guidelines The majority of shops remain closed across Germany but as this is reversed in the future, clear and consistent regulations are necessary to avoid legal uncertainty, unfair competition or collective uncertainty. Decisions shoul...
16 April 2020
Coundown has launched its first darkstore in Auckland, helping the retailer meet the growing demand for ecommerce in the country's largest city. New centre will meet rapidly growing demand Even before the Coronavirus (COVID-19) surge in demand for online grocery deliveries, New Zealand was experiencing some rapid growth in the online channel. The new 8,800 sq m darkstore in Penrose will hel...
15 April 2020
With the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic requiring shoppers globally to remain at home, retailers exhausting online order capacity, and rationalising ranges, now is the time for businesses to use online to sell directly to consumers (D2C). Demand is so high for online ordering and home delivery, that the cost to acquire and retain shoppers, a key barrier to launching a D2C operation, is current...
15 April 2020
In a letter to stakeholders, Starbucks provided an update on how COVID-19 has impacted its business and how it is responding, as well as sharing preliminary financial results ahead of its Q2 report on 28 April. McDonald’s has also released a statement ahead of its Q1 results, due for release on 30 April. For more on the company’s announcement, read more here . Starbucks’s focus Sinc...
15 April 2020
The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) is expanding its SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programme) online pilot to two more states: Florida and Idaho. Amazon and Walmart participating in all pilot states The pilot programme enables recipients of SNAP benefits, often referred to as food stamps, to purchase items through designated online retailers. The pilot is live in Alabama, Iowa...