Tesco has announced altered opening hours and restrictions on buying items amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
The superstore’s 24-hour shops are shut between 10pm and 6am to allow staff to restock overnight “at a time when demand is high”.
This applies to stores locally in Greenfield, Oldham, Stalybridge, Hattersley and Droylsden.
And in an update to customers, Tesco CEO Dave Lewis confirmed that from Thursday, March 19 restrictions are in place for shoppers.
He said: “It is fair to say that we find ourselves in uncharted waters.
“At Tesco, we have been doing everything we can to keep business as usual, but we now have to accept it is not business as usual.
“In the last two weeks, we have seen significant and prolonged increases in demand across all of our stores and this is leading to shortages in some products for some customers.
“Reacting to the latest government announcements, we have to plan on this situation being the new normal and we will do all that we can to make the food you want available, but we need your help.
“In order to protect the core shopping essentials, we are going to implement some changes to simplify what we do so we can provide more of what people need in a clean and safe environment. We ask for your understanding and your support.
“From Thursday 19 March we will start to implement the following changes:
- To ensure more people have access to everyday essentials, we are introducing a storewide restriction of only three items per customer on every product line and removing multi-buy promotions.
- To allow Tesco colleagues to focus on stocking shelves, helping to provide the essential groceries you are looking for and to avoid waste, we will close all meat, fish, deli counters and salad bars.
- To be able to ensure our stores are clean, that we can replenish stock, and allow our colleagues to rest, we will change our trading hours with all stores closing at 10pm.
- To ensure we are doing everything possible to reduce the risk of infection for both our customers and colleagues, we will be introducing some distancing measures at the checkout and, to make it swifter, invite customers who can, to pay by card.
- To help free up slots for the more vulnerable, such as our elderly customers and those who are self-isolating, we are encouraging customers who shop online or choose Click+Collect for their grocery home shopping, to prioritise shopping in-store where possible.
- To ensure our more vulnerable and elderly customers can shop in-store, we will prioritise one hour every Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning between 9-10am (except in our Express stores) and ask that you respect this.
“Tesco store colleagues can’t work from home and a good number of them will need to respond to personal or family challenges connected with dealing with COVID-19.
“So we would please ask that you understand the challenging environment in which we are all working. If you do go in-store and want to say thank you, then I’m sure they’d appreciate it.
“If you could help us by limiting demand of essential items and allowing us to focus on the core needs of our customers, we are confident that we can continue to feed the nation.
“We are delivering food daily to our stores, but this is a very challenging time and we will only get through this if we work together.”
Please check www.tesco.com for further updates.