Spike in demand forces suspension of online grocery deliveries

Supermarkets and suppliers are replenishing their stocks, hiring more staff and adding more vehicles to meet the demands of their customers.

KUALA LUMPUR: Panic buying has resulted in the suspension of online grocery delivery services with supermarkets trying to cope with the spike in orders.

The Jaya Grocer supermarket chain said replenishing stocks is its top priority at the moment, and it is doubling efforts to do so.

“We are facing a huge increase in orders for our online delivery service, and we understand that some of you may have had a less than satisfactory online shopping experience,” it said in a statement.

Online grocery store MyGroser, which delivers throughout the Klang Valley, is also facing unusually high traffic to its website.

MyGroser chief executive officer and co-founder Stephen Francis said there has been “a sudden, unexpected demand” and his team had to delay or deliver orders with only half the items requested.

“The increase has been substantial, but we have managed to increase our delivery fleet and capacity over the past two days, and are now able to help even more consumers who need groceries delivered.

“Currently, we are deploying an enhanced online solution that is able to handle greater volumes of requests and orders, as well as increasing the number of vehicles to better meet delivery times,” he told Bernama.

HappyFresh Malaysia managing director Hu Hun Hui said the company has seen a 10%-15% increase in orders.

He said the company is hiring more riders and working with a logistics provider to assist in deliveries, while being updated on stock availability by its retail partners.

Lazada Malaysia also said it is experiencing a spike in orders over the weekend.

A company spokesman said more people are buying grocery items and also teleconferencing and computer accessories.

The spokesman said its warehouse and delivery personnel have been working tirelessly to ensure continued operations and to minimise the impact on deliveries.

Meanwhile, Mydin Mohamed Holdings Bhd managing director Ameer Ali Mydeen said shoppers are spending more on rice, sugar, cooking oil, cookies, canned food such as sardines as well as frozen food.

He said demand for adult diapers and items such as face masks and hand sanitisers continues to be high.