Coronavirus: information and updates

Food and essentials during coronavirus

Supermarkets and community groups are working together to make sure everyone can get the supplies they need. We’ll try to keep this information up to date, but check with specific supermarkets and online stores for the most recent updates.

Contact your local authority for support

Government food boxes ended on 31 July. Contact your local authority if you are having problems getting food.

If you are on the shielding list, you should still have priority for supermarket delivery slots in England.

All supermarkets in Wales offering home delivery will prioritise customers on the shielding list.

Find coronavirus help in your local area (GOV.UK)

Are you finding it hard to afford food? (GOV.UK) 

Contact your local authority (gov.wales)

Warning If you cannot get local authority support or supermarket deliveries

If you are disabled but not considered extremely vulnerable to coronavirus, there are other ways to get essentials like:

If you are having trouble getting supermarket delivery slots, contact our helpline.

Local groups and volunteers can help you get food and essentials

Some local groups have volunteers to get essentials for people who cannot go to shops or get deliveries.

If you’re struggling to get deliveries, contact your local support group. A volunteer should contact you to arrange:

  • what shopping or prescriptions you need picking up
  • how to pay for your shopping
  • when they can drop your shopping to your door (they will not come inside your home)

Find local volunteer groups to help you get essentials

Supermarkets

Many supermarkets have changed what they offer disabled customers. This includes things like:

  • opening hours with dedicated times and days for certain shoppers
  • food boxes with essentials
  • priority delivery slots
  • restricting how many items you can buy so there’s enough for everyone
  • making sure people can shop safely 

Check each supermarket to find out how they’re allocating deliveries. You will need to register for online shopping on their website.

If you’re struggling to get deliveries from your supermarket, you could try phoning your local corner shop to see if they will deliver.

Access to dedicated shopping hours

Many supermarkets are not asking for proof but you may need to explain that you have a health condition or are disabled. If you’re worried about getting access, you could try taking disability benefit or blue badge paperwork with you.

You could also try getting a sunflower lanyard. This tells staff you have an invisible condition and may help you access the shopping hours.

How to get a sunflower lanyard (Tesco)

Sunflower lanyard scheme (Sainsbury’s)

Warning Check your local supermarket website

Check your local supermarket website for updated information on changes to the services and the support they can give you.

Asda

Asda offers home delivery, food boxes, and the Asda Volunteer Shopping Card. This provides a contactless and secure way for others to shop for you if you cannot get a delivery.

Volunteer Shopping Card (Asda)

Asda food boxes

Check Asda for updates

Tesco

All Tesco stores (except Tesco Express) will prioritise older people and vulnerable people between 9am and 10am every Wednesday and Sunday. On Sundays you can add items to your trolley but you’ll only be allowed to buy them after 10am.

Priority slots for vulnerable customers (Tesco)

Order your Volunteer e–Gift Card (Tesco)

Check Tesco for updates

Morrisons

Morrisons has no priority delivery slots or special shopping times. They offer food boxes with everyday essentials delivered by courier. They also offer gift cards to make it easier for volunteers to buy shopping for you.

Morrisons food boxes

Morrisons gift cards for volunteers

Aldi

Vulnerable and older people can browse Aldi stores 30 minutes before they open, Monday to Saturday. Aldi also offer food parcels for home delivery.

Aldi food parcels

Check Aldi for updates

M&S

The first hour of trading is for people over 70 and vulnerable customers on Mondays and Thursdays. You can arrange home deliveries through Ocado.

M&S and Ocado delivery information

Buy e-gift cards for volunteers (M&S)

Check M&S for updates

Waitrose

The first shopping hour on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays is for vulnerable customers.

Waitrose has prioritised delivery slots for vulnerable customers and those over the age of 70. They’re also contacting customers on the government priority lists.

Check Waitrose for updates

Sainsbury's

Vulnerable customers have priority access to online home delivery service. If you are unable to order online, there is a telephone ordering service.

If you are not on their vulnerable customers list, call free on 0800 328 1700.

Elderly, vulnerable and disabled customers have priority entry from 8am to 9am Monday, Wednesday and Friday. There is also a Volunteer Shopping Card to enable people to shop for others easily in store.

Check Sainsbury's for updates

Co-op

All Co-op stores have a dedicated shopping hour for those at higher risk and the people who care for them. The hour is 8am to 9am Monday to Saturday and from 10am to 11am on Sundays.

You can also call 0800 029 4592 to order a Community Shopping Card for shopping volunteers.

Order a quick shop delivery (Co-op) 

Check Co-op for updates

Get support from Co-op

Home Bargains

Home Bargains essential food box delivery.

Iceland

Iceland offers home delivery for customers on the shielding list.

Check Iceland for updates

Online stores

Online stores like Amazon or eBay offer food and essentials if you cannot get them delivered from the supermarket. Check the quantities and delivery dates first as there may be delays.

eBay food and drink 

AmazonFresh is available for Prime members to order fresh food and essentials from local shops and supermarkets. You can also find other food items, such as tea or canned goods through the main website if you’re not a Prime member.

Milk & More offers a local delivery service where you can buy milk and other grocery items.

Register your interest as a new customer for Milk & More deliveries

Local veg box schemes or wholesale suppliers

Check if there is a food box delivery scheme in your area. Some food wholesale suppliers offer home deliveries to help people get essentials. Just make sure you check the quantities of products if you’re buying from a wholesale supplier.

Search for wholesale suppliers or food box schemes: 

Meal delivery services

Meals on Wheels

If you are eligible, your council or other local organisations may provide meals delivered to your home.

Get meals at home (meals on wheels) (GOV.UK)

Wiltshire Farm Foods

Wiltshire Farm Foods offers frozen ready meals for people on the 'extremely vulnerable' list. You can call them using their ‘priority number’ to place an order.

Deliveries to extremely vulnerable customers

Check Wiltshire Farm Foods for updates

Cook

Cook delivers frozen ready meals.

Check Cook for updates

Parsley Box

Parsley Box delivers ready meals you can store in a cupboard.

Parsley Box

Vibrant Vegan Co.

Vegan ready meals delivered to your door.

Vibrant Vegan Co. ready meals

HelloFresh

HelloFresh deliver ingredients for you to cook set meals you’ve chosen from their menu.

Check HelloFresh for updates

Food banks

Food banks are community organisations that support people who cannot afford the essentials. Search online for your local food bank or find a food bank on the Trussell Trust website.

Find a food bank (Trussell Trust)

Warning Do not use food banks if you can afford food

If you can afford food but are unable to get it, do not go to a food bank. Contact your local authority for support instead.

Find your local authority (GOV.UK)

Contact Citizens Advice

Last reviewed by Scope on: 29/07/2020

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