As the hospitality industry grapples with the implications of the Coronavirus outbreak, UK consumers are turning to online delivery options rather than dining out in restaurants and hotels.

Online healthy recipe box delivery Mindful Chef, has seen an unprecedented increase in sales since the outbreak including a 452% spike in new recipe box customers and a 387% rise in frozen meal sales, as the UK continues to stockpile. According to Trustpilot, multiple customers are spending over £500 on just one Mindful Chef order, equating to more than 80 frozen meals. 

The news comes as online shopping delivery service Ocado announced its suspension of its online food delivery service due to unprecedented demand, whilst a number of supermarkets have introduced strict limits on how many goods people can purchase.

“Unlike the vast majority of online grocery providers who have had to halt orders, Mindful Chef is still very much open for business and dedicated to delivering healthy meals to customers across the UK, old and new,” says Giles Humphries, Co-Founder of Mindful Chef. “We continue to deliver seven days a week, nationwide and we don’t require a delivery signature – providing contactless delivery for those self-isolating.”

Meanwhile, restaurants and food and drinks brands are adapting as footfall dramatically drops and forced closures appear imminent. A number of hospitality businesses are changing their offerings in line with the latest government guidelines, pivoting toward takeaway options and offering NHS discounts to NHS staff and volunteers.

TipJar and Hospitality Action have launched a Hospitality Workers Emergency Fund to help hospitality workers who will lose zero-hour contracts during the crisis, while Kerb, a membership organisation dedicated to the incubation of London’s street food businesses, are launching their Keep The Wheels Turning campaign, which will include a web shop of vouchers and street food experiences to support the continuation of the industry at this difficult time. 

Moving operations online, Cutter and Squidge is offering a special price of £9 to any delivery within the M25 and Copperhouse Chocolate, London’s only vegan chocolate cafe, has made a variety of sweet treats available to purchase on their website including brownies, cookies and Easter eggs.

Similarly, Original Sin and Happiness Forgets Bars are working with alcohol brands to support efforts to safely deliver their award-winning cocktails to local neighbourhoods in London, ensuring as many staff as possible can remain employed whilst also offering high-quality drinks at home. A number of food photographers and stylists are also offering their services free of charge for those needing new imagery as more begin to offer takeaway and delivery services.