Amazon trials home food deliveries - initially around Great London with third-party vehicles
Amazon trials home food deliveries - initially around Great London with third-party vehicles
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Phenomenal growth in home deliveries

  • At the CV Show 2016 the FTA reported that growth in home deliveries was fuelling the van industry
  • In 2015 the weekly spend in online shopping was £815 million
  • The boom boosts van sales, conversions, and jobs
  • Read about it here

THERE is a fresh boost to the vans industry as retail giant Amazon trials home food deliveries – a sector which is fuelling a significant growth in temperature-controlled grocery delivery vehicles and conversions.

The US-based company is trialling its Amazon Fresh service in Greater London, with a view to rolling it out nationwide if it continues to be a success.

Originally known for its books and music, Amazon is now the latest name in the burgeoning home food delivery market, taking the fight to the big supermarkets. But unlike smaller, specialist food retailers, it has the might of a giant corporation behind it, meaning its growth could be significant and rapid.

This could bring further growth to the already thriving van market, which is already seeing record volumes. LCV registrations rose 1.9% in May, and there are now over four million vans on the UK’s roads, a figure bolstered by a huge growth in the home delivery market.

SMMT Chief Executive Mike Hawes said: “Providing there are no political or economic shocks to business confidence over the coming months, we expect the LCV sector’s good health to prevail during the remainder of 2016 as consumer appetite for online deliveries continues to grow.”

Keeping it cool

The Amazon Fresh service is currently available to subscription-only Amazon Prime customers in 69 postcode areas in central and east London and food orders can be placed along with other goods from Amazon Prime, with more than 130,000 refrigerated foods, ambient food products and household goods available for delivery.

As Amazon trials home food deliveries, the food orders can be combined with other ‘same-day’ deliveries from the retailer, which include Amazon’s more traditional areas such as books, music and home entertainment.

At present, Amazon Fresh deliveries will be carried out by third-party companies, though if the trial is a success it’s likely that the company will be investing in its own fleet of home delivery vehicles to rival the likes of Waitrose spin-off Ocado…

At present, Amazon Fresh deliveries will be carried out by third-party companies, though if the trial is a success it’s likely that the company will be investing in its own fleet of home delivery vehicles to rival the likes of Waitrose spin-off Ocado.

This is along with the more traditional major supermarket retailers such as Tesco, Asda and Sainsbury’s, all of whom have reported a surge in home delivery orders over the past three years, often at the expense of their mainstream stores.

Among the household brands, such as Kellogg’s, Ben and Jerry’s and Bird’s Eye, Amazon will be offering over 1,000 ‘own brand’ products from Morrisons, enabling it to compete with the more traditional suppliers.

Should the service take off, Amazon Fresh is likely to roll out nationwide, starting with the most densely populated parts of the UK such as the South East and North West. If so, then its growth could lead to further registrations and jobs in the refrigerated home delivery sector, as it has done in the USA.

In Seattle, for example, Amazon Fresh has captured a 40.3% share of the online grocery market in just three years.

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