Many Americans are hopeful that the world will return to normal soon, but a post-pandemic society will likely look different in numerous ways, including how we acquire basic necessities like groceries.
Instacart, a grocery shopping and delivery service, has seen its order volume surge by 500% during the coronavirus pandemic, and it doesn’t think that demand will fall off when people are comfortable leaving their homes again.
“Most people on average eat 21 times a week, and most of those meals come from the grocery store. That trend isn’t going to change, but the way people access the groceries and goods they need has,” Instacart President Nilam Ganenthiran told Fox Business. “We believe the growth we’re experiencing marks a long-term shift in consumer adoption of grocery delivery and pickup services.”
Whole Foods CEO John Mackey agrees with the sentiment. He told the Wall Street Journal Friday that online grocery delivery is here to stay.
“When things return to normal, there will be a lot of people who don’t go back to shopping in-person,” he told the newspaper.
Amazon, which bought Whole Foods for $13.7 billion in 2017, is already coming up with innovative ways to streamline online grocery shopping.
The company told USA Today last week that it opened its first “dark store” in Brooklyn, which is essentially a giant warehouse of food specifically designed for online delivery.
“We started working on this over a year ago and it was really an opportunity for Amazon and Whole Foods Market to come together and create this vision for the future of grocery online,” Nicole Wescoe, Whole Foods president for the Northeast region, told USA Today.