Emergency services become JJ Foodservice VIPs

JJ Foodservice is rolling out a special Just for Heroes service for the nation’s emergency staff.

Members of the NHS, police force and fire brigade are being offered a fast-track service, meaning they’ll be served first when they visit a JJ Foodservice branch.

By simply showing their staff ID at any JJ site, emergency workers will get priority – a small way to say thank you for their efforts during the coronavirus pandemic.

“NHS staff and emergency services across the UK are working tirelessly to cope with and prepare for the demands of the ongoing coronavirus outbreak,” said JJ’s Group General Manager, Terry Larkin. “They are our heroes and we want to support them.”

JJ has been one a growing number of foodservice wholesalers to offer straight-to-consumer services in the wake of Covid-19 restrictions, with next-day home delivery and contactless payment options available for the general public.

There’s been a flock of foodservice wholesalers doing something similar, with Thomas Ridley Foodservice announcing an open-to-all service earlier this week.

The wholesaler has not only thrown its online ordering and click & collect services to consumers, but also increased resources to deal with increased demand.

“Our click & collect service is open to all, you do not need an account to order on our website,” said Thomas Ridley Foodservice e-Commerce Director, Darren Osborn.

“Choose the click & collect option at checkout to collect items from our warehouse in Suffolk or alternatively, we use a courier service for customers further afield.

“We’re experiencing a surge in demand, especially from non-trade customers; families, people who are self-isolating and anyone who is trying to get groceries.  We have put more resource into our operations to help to meet this demand and ensure that we can continue to supply.”

Fairway member Tyneside Foodservice have also taken the decision to sell to consumers, with strong engagement in just the first day after announcing the service online.

It has launched an essentials food box, containing items such as pasta, toilet roll, bread, rice, milk, and cereal, with people able to collect from their depot in the north east or request delivery.

“Communities are coming together to work their way through the coronavirus outbreak, and this was evidenced in the very first order we received,” added Tyneside Foodservice Director John Hervin.

“The customer purchased an essentials box and asked us to give it to someone who really needed it such as an NHS worker or someone in a high­-priority category.

“Although we are still servicing our trade customers who have takeaway facilities, we do have spare capacity as a result of the government’s decision to close pubs, schools and restaurants.

“We’re hoping to fill that capacity by supporting the general public with their food needs.”

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