Online grocery orders surge as Karnataka enters 14-day lockdown

Online grocery orders surge as Karnataka enters 14-day lockdown
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It is business as usual for ecommerce players in Karnataka even as the state enters a 14-day statewide lockdown from Tuesday evening.  

The state has not restricted movement of non-essential deliveries by ecommerce companies, according to guidelines released on Monday. Like the nationwide lockdown last March, e-grocery players such as BigBasket and Grofers are once again seeing a rise in orders.  

“The second wave of the pandemic has led to a huge surge in orders across all cities on our platform. In view of the pandemic situation, we had worked on increasing our capacity and building infrastructure throughout last year and also in early 2021. As a result, BigBasket is making deliveries in all our operating cities, albeit with extended timelines in some cities due to unexpectedly high demand and movement restrictions,” a BigBasket spokesperson told TechCircle

Watch: Hari Menon on how BigBasket faltered and emerged stronger through the Covid-19 crisis 

Grofers’ order volumes have grown more than 2X since the lockdown was announced in Delhi and Karnataka, driven by increasing demand of packaged and ready to cook food items. Cleaners and disinfectants too are selling fast, a company spokesperson told TechCircle.  

The Delhi government, which has extended lockdown until May 3, continues to bar delivery of non-essential goods. 

“Since the announcement of further restrictions by the Delhi and Karnataka governments, we have witnessed a spike of more than double the order volumes in both these regions. There is a significant surge in the demand in categories such as – packaged foods i.e., ready to eat and ready to cook, frozen foods, packaged milk, and milk products. There is also a surge in demand for repellents, floor cleaners & disinfectants. Categories like vegetable washes have also witnessed a surge in sales - the highest in the last year,” he said. 

The Grofers spokesperson added, “We are working closely with our brand and manufacturing partners to ensure a steady supply of essential products; and are ramping up our capacities - both in terms of stocks and people across markets to serve our consumers in a safe, secure and timely manner.” 

Amazon too has ramped up services. The e-commerce giant says it has kept products categories restricted as per government guidelines at various states.  

“Customers trust Amazon to safely deliver all products according to their respective needs. Currently, we are enabling deliveries of products in line with guidelines set by the Government. Ecommerce and all forms of safe & reliable home delivery of all products are the best ways to maintain social distancing norms. Safety of our customers and our associates continues to be our highest priority and we are working across the Operations network to enable faster deliveries to customers in these difficult times,” an Amazon spokesperson said. 

Maharashtra, which is under a phased lockdown since April 5, had imposed restrictions on delivery of non-essential goods. The state accounts for 10% of total value of goods sold by top e-commerce players across the country per month.