Saturday, March 21, 2020

Coronavirus will change the grocery industry forever


By Nathaniel Meyersohn, CNN Business

New York (CNN Business)The outbreak of coronavirus is pushing Americans to buy their groceries online, a development that could have a lasting effect on the supermarket industry.

While shopping for books and electronics online and ordering dinner through delivery apps have become staples of American life, most customers still prefer to purchase their meat and vegetables at the store. Last year, just 4% of grocery sales in the United States came online, according to Nielsen.

However, with shoppers stuck in their homes in the wake of the virus, online grocery shopping is exploding. Downloads of Instacart, Walmart's grocery app and Shipt increased 218%, 160%, and 124% respectively last Sunday compared with a year prior.

"We are seeing a larger percentage of customers over the age of 60 that are coming online," said JJ Fleeman, chief e-commerce officer for Ahold Delhaize in the United States, which owns brands like Stop & Shop, Food Lion and the online delivery service Peapod. "We're seeing a lot of new customers coming into the channel."  Read more >>