Holland and Barrett imposes limits on immunity products amid COVID-19 panic buying

By Nikki Hancocks contact

- Last updated on GMT

Getty | Roger Utting Photography
Getty | Roger Utting Photography

Related tags: COVID-19, supplements, Health, Nutrition, panic buying

Global health food chain Holland and Barrett has brought in sales limits to reduce panic buying and introduced a dedicated one-hour shopping window for the elderly and vulnerable as well as a new call centre to keep up with soaring demand caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The global health food store sent out an email to its customers this morning (March 19th) with the aim to reassure them of its increased hygiene controls and inform of new measures to ensure customers can get the health products that are in high demand during this fast-developing Coronavirus pandemic.

The measures include a one-hour shopping window dedicated to the vulnerable and elderly and limiting sales of certain food and immunity lines to two units per customer to curb panic buying, as has been done across many supermarkets.

The firm is also hoping to help those in isolation by introducing a new call centre staffed by volunteers.

Tony Buffin, CEO, sent an email to customer this morning in which he said: "We are encouraging contactless card payments in store where possible, we are providing hand sanitisers to our teams, we have further intensified cleaning and are offering advice around social distancing for customers in store and to our teams.

"We will also be introducing a one-hour shopping window for our elderly and more vulnerable customers at the start of each day during the week. While this won’t be an enforced window, we trust you will respect this special group of customers and provide them with the time and space we have offered them to shop.

"For those who are not as comfortable ordering online or who do not have access to our website, we are introducing a new call centre number. This will enable you to place your orders and seek advice from some of our longest serving and most capable colleagues who have kindly volunteered to provide this service.

"This new number is: 0330 058 2025 ​and we would ask you to select 0 for service. For those who are able, thousands of our products can be found online at hollandandbarrett.com

"Following your feedback on the availability of certain products, and to ensure we are fair to all customers, from tomorrow, we will limit certain food and immunity lines to two units per customer.

"This is a management decision and, whilst we recognise that this may be frustrating, we would please ask you to show consideration for our store teams as they help us to ensure we serve as many customers as possible.

"To help us keep up with demand we are creating a significant number of new jobs within our distribution, packing and production facilities. It will take us a little time to train our new team members but please be rest assured we are working around the clock to ensure our shops are well stocked.

"In the coming days and weeks you should be confident that we will be doing all we can to protect our amazing, hard-working and caring colleagues as well as ensuring your safety and continued access to our products."

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