Tesco is now the first retailer in the UK to fulfil one million online grocery orders in a week. Following a huge effort to increase online delivery capacity, our one millionth order was delivered this week from our Enfield Customer Fulfilment Centre.
Capacity continues to increase and in the coming weeks will reach 1.2 million weekly slots – double the number of slots at the start of the COVID-19 crisis.
To support this significant step-up in capacity, we have hired 4,000 new drivers and 12,000 new pickers since the start of the crisis. In stores with an online grocery operation, our colleagues now begin picking from 2am and we open to customers later, at 8am, so that we have more time to put together online orders. Yesterday our colleagues set a new record, picking more than 10 million items in a single day for the first time ever.
The increase in online grocery slots has enabled us to offer priority access to customers that have been identified as most vulnerable by the Government and who don’t have their own support network. We are also working with the Government to see how we can increase our capacity to help an expanded list of people who might not be on their critical vulnerable list, but who might need our support. To help us free up as many slots as possible for the people that need them most, we continue to urge customers to shop in-store, if they are able to do so.
Chris Poad, Managing Director, Online, said: “Now, more than ever, it’s important we do everything we can to help people get access to food, particularly our most vulnerable customers. We’ve rapidly changed our online business to help create more slots for people that need them most – from recruiting thousands of new colleagues to changing the way we pick and pack orders. We know there’s still more we can do and we’ll keep working hard to find ways we can serve even more people through this time.”
We are also supporting food banks and community groups across the country with a £30m package of support, including a £25m food donation programme, to ensure people across the nation are able to access the food they need.