Central England Co-op has moved to reassure its customers, members and communities that it is taking significant steps to help minimise the impact of the upcoming national lockdown.
The retailer, which has over 240 stores across 16 counties, has plans in place to mitigate any potential issues caused by new Government restrictions to fight the Covid-19 pandemic, which come into force from Thursday.
This includes strengthening its already robust distribution network, forging increased relationships with local suppliers and offering easier access to food and vital essentials via its Call and Collect service for its members and, in some areas, via the one-hour, eco-friendly delivery service Snappy App.
Customers are also being asked to continue to work with Central England Co-op to ‘keep our communities safe’ by adhering to a wide range of measures put in place in stores to keep everyone safe while ensuring access to vital food and essentials.
Debbie Robinson, Central England Co-op Chief Executive, said: “Nothing is more important to us all at Central England Cooperative than the health and safety of our colleagues and customers.
“We want to say a big thank you to our customers for their understanding and helping us to keep themselves and our colleagues safe during this pandemic and throughout the coming winter months.
“We are confident that we have taken all the necessary precautionary steps, including working with a wide range of local suppliers, to keep your local Co-op well stocked.
“Our suppliers and colleagues are working hard to make sure that shelves are regularly re-stocked, as a community retailer we know how important it is for everyone to have access to good quality food and vital essentials.
“Today we are asking our customers and members to be considerate to others at this uncertain time and shop responsibly.”
The retailer has also re-issued its plea for people to show ‘care, compassion and respect’ to its colleagues as they continue to work around the clock to serve their communities and go above and beyond to replenish stock levels and keep stores and homes open.
The Society will be continuing to work with over 65 food bank partners with instore donation points, and its pioneering partnership with FareShare Midlands to redistribute food and create over one million meals for local good causes.
The retailer is also promoting its Community Dividend Fund to allow immediate financial support for good causes, groups and charities helping communities deal with the impact of these uncertain times.
The Society’s funeral arm is also working around the clock 24 hours a day to support families in need, including providing a free online bereavement service via Grief Chat.