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Oz In Lockdown: What The Transition To Food Delivery Means For Jobs & Businesses

With the government restricting restaurants and cafes to takeaway and home deliveries only, restaurants are seeking out food delivery options, which could mean more jobs in new industries.

Increased home deliveries

In the US, pizza deliveries have skyrocketed as people increasingly hunker down. Dominos has already witnessed a similar trend in Australia.

In its half year results published in February, Dominos stated its ANZ stores were serving an increasing number of customers through online delivery to their homes, noting “a trend towards ‘cocooning’ with their loved ones and friends”.

Dominos is offering a zero contact option for deliveries, and has said it could easily make this the only option available if necessary.

A Dominos spokesperson told ChannelNews, “We anticipate that if the demand for food delivery continues, we will need to employ more team members to help us safely prepare and deliver food to our communities and front line workers.” Dominos currently employs 18,000 people across Australia and New Zealand.

Gourmet Dinner Service, an Australian company that delivers home-cooked meals, told ChannelNews that their turnover was up 100% last week, and that both the number of orders and the size of orders has increased.

“We have just taken on three full-time kitchen staff employees to help us keep ahead of demand,” a Gourmet Dinner Service spokesperson said. “Thankfully, we have plenty of access to fresh ingredients and our kitchens are working overtime to produce extra meals.”

Restaurants transition to online delivery platforms

Last week Menulog, which has long been a leading player in online food and beverage ordering in Australia, implemented new initiatives to support restaurants as they transition to solely relying on pick-up and takeaway orders.

Menulog has said it will be waiving all activation fees for restaurants joining the Menulog platform; halving its commission on pick-up orders until further notice (for all 17,000 of its restaurants); and investing $3 million in marketing to promote local restaurants open for pick-up and delivery.

Restaurants will now also be able to redeploy their own employees as drivers when taking orders through Menulog’s online system.

“Menulog has invested in additional resources in order to quickly provide online ordering and delivery solutions to impacted hospitality businesses to keep them in trade,” Menulog Managing Director Morten Belling said. “We will continue to work very closely with our longstanding partners at Restaurant & Catering Australia.”

Menulog and Uber Eats are both offering contactless deliveries.

Online restaurant booking platform app TheFork has added a search function to allow customers to see which of its restaurants are offering takeaway and home delivery, at no extra cost to its restaurants.

Higher meal-kit orders

Meal-kit delivery company Marley Spoon – which is based in Europe but also operates in Australia and the US – said its worldwide growth accelerated by more than 40% year-on-year in Q1 2020.

The company’s revenue for the first quarter of 2020 is expected to be above €42 million.

“While it is difficult to forecast, we do expect demand to increase further as more and more people in Australia and around the world are remaining at home for the foreseeable future,” a Marley Spoon spokesperson told ChannelNews.

Marley Spoon said they have been hiring even more additional team members than usual to cope with the rising demand.

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