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COVID-19 Shopping Behaviours

COVID-19 Shopping Behaviours 1024 569 R&G Fresh

When the lockdown was announced, consumers had to adapt to a different way of shopping and cooking. With that in mind, we take a look at the impact COVID-19 has had on shopping behaviours so far.

Lockdown began on the 23rd March 2020 and shopping habits changed rapidly as panic buying across the country saw customers switch from fresh, to dried, frozen or ambient.

Shopping days (and time of day) changed as people were furloughed and retailers had to enforce restrictions on how many people could shop safely in store at any given time. Consumers started to shop at the start of the week and earlier in the day, which became the ‘new normal’, rather than at weekends.

During this period, customers found their inner chef and more families ate together in the evenings. People started to be more creative, using online recipes and getting inspiration via their store cupboard ingredients.

Home baking became the new trend, along with batch cooking and scratch cooking becoming more popular. These are set to continue as lockdown eases.

With this inspiration of uses, preparation of products and not wasting any leftover food, fresh-cut herbs sales saw an increase. Some of which was driven by consumers enjoying low, slow cooking for BBQ’s, making marinades, pesto and other sauces.

Although beers, wines and spirits have seen significant uplift over this period there was a particular interest in low or non-alcoholic cocktails too. These, coupled with old faithful herbs such as thyme, rosemary and bay provided a depth of flavour. Plus, by using the more fragrant herbs such as basil and mint an amazing freshness can be added to any mocktail.

Online sales crashed for several retailers during the initial months of the pandemic and convenience stores became the go-to for customers needing to pick up their local groceries where shelves were well stocked. Larger retailers struggled with demand and as we saw in the news, shelves were empty. This did increase sales, giving local stores significant growth.

As the situation eased, with more people returning to work and online slot availability considerably improved across retailers, customers continue to do one big shop a week with a small top-up from local shops.

This is starting to slow down now that more fast food outlets are starting to open and the appeal to eat out after lockdown has seen a rise in footfall to restaurants.

Traditional shopping habits are slowly returning to normal. The change, however, is gradual with online and ‘click and collect’ services having the largest growth over these unprecedented times. This is set to continue as the ‘new normal’ preferred way to shop.

Want to speak to us about stocking our fresh-cut herbs and ingredients? Please contact us for more information.

Herb Of The Month – Chives

Herb Of The Month – Chives 1500 833 R&G Fresh

Small is beautiful! The most delicate and diminutive member of the edible onion family packs a mild yet tangy punch.

Chives (Allium schoenoprasum)

Chives have been a staple European herb ingredient since the Middle Ages. A surprisingly versatile member of the onion family, the fine, hollow leaves grow up to 12” tall, bearing a small perennial bulb that often grows in clumps.

Chives offer a subtle onion taste, combined with the unmistakable oniony aroma. The mild flavour is reminiscent of baby spring onions or young leeks and makes chives a great additional ingredient in a variety of dishes ranging from soups and salads, to omelettes and cheeses.

Top Tip!
Chefs looking to retain the delicate onion flavour and deep green colour tend to use chives raw – or added to a dish, just before serving.

COVID-19 Secure

COVID-19 Secure 1500 833 R&G Fresh

R&G FRESH has always been committed to prioritising the health, safety and wellbeing of our team. This commitment continues with the current operating environment and taking into account the requirements relating to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In response to the pandemic, we have thoroughly reviewed our working practices across the business and for all roles and taken the steps necessary to make them compatible with government guidance to ensure safe workplaces. We will continue to review the guidance provided to us as it develops over time and will make the changes and developments recommended. We are also consulting with our team and asking for feedback from them on an ongoing basis, so that they are confident that R&G FRESH is doing all it can to make their workspaces a safe and pleasant place to be.

Our Values

Our Values 1500 833 R&G Fresh

R&G FRESH places paramount importance on the quality and professionalism of both the products and the business. From selecting the best quality herbs, through to packaging and order fulfilment, the company takes great pride in what it has achieved, based on the core values detailed below.

Quality

R&G FRESH only supplies the highest quality fresh-cut culinary herbs. The company either grows the herbs or imports winter supplies from a long-standing selected supplier base, where R&G FRESH knows each supplier, performs on-site visits and insists on the highest standards of professional accreditation and worker welfare.

Consistency

From punctual and precise hassle-free order fulfilment to the consistent premium quality of the bagged product, R&G FRESH is well known for reliability and constant product excellence.

Experience

With more than half a century in the fresh-cut herb business, R&G’s customers can rest assured that their requirements are handled by one of the most experienced companies in the fresh produce industry. R&G has a broad customer base that includes national supermarket chains, major foodservice organisations, high-end restaurants and catering groups.

Technical Excellence

R&G FRESH uses state of the art packaging techniques to ensure the delivered-to order herbs arrive in peak condition. R&G FRESH was the UK’s first fresh produce supplier to use modified atmosphere packaging, micro-perforated films that allow the herbs inside to breathe, maintaining the quality and increasing the shelf life.

HEAD OFFICE

7 Chancerygate Way, Hawley Lane
Farnborough, Hampshire GU14 8FF

Tel: +44 (0)1483 474041
Fax: +44 (0)1483 476371
E-mail: info@rgfresh.co.uk

COVENT GARDEN

Stand C65 Buyers Walk, The Pavilion
New Covent Garden Market London SW8 5DZ

Tel: +44 (0)20 7720 6990
Fax: +44 (0)20 7720 6990
E-mail: info@rgfresh.co.uk

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