Borough Market is extending its online delivery service to all addresses within the M25 amid the COVID-19 outbreak. The market is also remaining open for shoppers.
Since its launch in November 2019, Borough Market Online has offered deliveries by zero-emission electric bike within a 2.5 mile radius. From Thursday 19 March deliveries will be temporarily extended to any location inside the M25. Click and collect is also available from the market up until 9pm each day.
Electric bike couriers will still be used for deliveries within a reasonable distance of the market, but vans – hybrid where possible – will be used further afield.
Strict hygiene practices mean that the food is securely packaged, and the option of a doorstep drop service allows it to be received without contact with couriers.
"In these extraordinary times, the delivery zone has been extended to within the M25," said Kate Howell, development director at Borough Market. "The priority is for the market to be able to deliver wonderful food from our traders to Londoners who have to stay at home and live outside our normal delivery zone."
Borough Market is also supporting its neighbours through a series of 'Food Community' measures – trader Bread Ahead is offering free yeast on request to those living locally who are keen to bake their own bread at home, and the market will be selling flour alongside other dried goods to keep Londoners cooking at home.
People across the UK (and the world) looking for culinary inspiration will be able to access hundreds of free online recipes – many using store cupboard staples, along with live cooking demos and cook-alongs from a range of chefs and restaurants hosted on the market's new Community Facebook Group.
Borough Market's partnership with the Plan Zheroes charity will continue, with surplus produce collected from the Market and delivered to community organisations that help feed some of the city's most vulnerable people.
Darren Henaghan, managing director, Borough Market said: "Our community is large and diverse, and our responsibilities to it go beyond the sale of food. We will use the online sphere to stay close to those who need comradeship or distraction-that's why we're using our resources, working with fantastic chefs, traders and producers to create a digital community which will support people stuck at home and give them a sense of connection through food."
"We have taken steps to shift the nature of the market from a place of congregation and engagement to one in which contact is kept to a minimum. Of course Borough Market is first and foremost a produce market – customers can think of it as an outdoor supermarket – so the produce traders selling meat, fish, fruit, veg and baked goods are still all operating.
"We aim to remain a haven for food lovers while supporting our small, independent businesses. Borough Market has served this community for a thousand years, through thick and thin. It has survived wars. It has lived through food shortages and curfews. As recently as 2017, our community withstood the trauma of a terrorist attack and the subsequent weeks of closure. It did so by remaining close and supportive, by caring about people – and that's how we'll get through this crisis too."
Communal seating has been removed from the Borough Market Kitchen and public events have been cancelled to minimise contact between customers and traders. Several of the market's restaurants and hot food concessions have closed but produce stalls selling meat, fish, bread and vegetables will continue to operate to serve customers and the wholesale trade.
Once the order is placed the Borough Market Online team will gather the produce from the relevant traders and place them in a designated hub within the Market. From here, customers can either collect their order at the market between 12pm and 9pm or it will be dispatched via state of the art zero-emission electric cargo bike, within a reasonable distance, or by van – hybrid where possible – to their address at a pre-booked time slot.
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