The Civil Supplies Department is planning to engage retail grocery outlets for home delivery of essential food items during the 21-day COVID-19 lockdown period.
The department was in the process of gathering the address and contact details of small and big retail outlets before publishing in vernacular and social media for customers to contact the owners for home delivery.
Already a prominent outlet is delivering grocery items to their regular customers. We have held talks with grocery dealers. The contact details of even small outlets functioning in residential areas are being collected. We are planning to roll out the programme by end of this week, Special Secretary-cum-Director Civil Supplies E. Vallavan told The Hindu.
The delivery boys will have to adhere to the general precautions advised to prevent spread of novel coronavirus including wearing masks, carrying hand sanitizer and maintaining personal distance.
The space used to pack food articles should be disinfected and also people employed for packaging groceries should take precautions, Mr Vallavan said.
Feedback received from the wholesale grocery dealers showed they had enough stock of rice and wheat for 10 to 15 days, he said adding traders have raised concerns about adequate availability of vegetables.
Wholesale traders here sourced eighty-five per cent of vegetables from the major markets in Gulbarga, Madanapalle, and Bengaluru in Karnataka.
After restrictions were imposed due to the outbreak of coronavirus in the country, traders in Karnataka have started buying goods directly from the farmers cutting flow of vegetables to the three main markets, he said.
We are taking steps to make adequate availability of vegetable stocks in our markets, he said.