Online grocer FreshDirect is following up a recent extension of two-hour delivery with a delivery capacity boost in New Jersey, Connecticut and New York’s Westchester County and Long Island.
FreshDirect said late Tuesday that expansion comes in response to a 100% growth surge in its suburban footprint.
“Suburban customers have experienced what residents of urban markets have known for a long time: Convenience doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice quality. You can access the best food in the country without a trip to the store,” David McInerney, co-Founder and CEO of FreshDirect, said in a statement. “And as more people relocate to the suburbs as a result of the pandemic, they are taking FreshDirect with them or trying us for the first time and never looking back.”
With the expanded capacity in Long Island, part of the New York metropolitan area, Bronx, N.Y.-based FreshDirect said it’s extending delivery to the Hamptons — a summer leisure and social hotspot in eastern Suffolk County — for “the foreseeable future” to meet continued demand.
A recent customer survey by FreshDirect found that 76% of customers already in the Hamptons plan to extend their stay beyond the summer. The company said it also plans to hire 350 full-time employees from now through mid-September.
“The decision to extend our service to the Hamptons is a direct response to the many customers who have decided to stay in that area for the foreseeable future due to the pandemic,” McInerney explained. “We wanted to extend the opportunity for them to have a safe grocery buying alternative for the rest of the year.”
Like other retailers across the grocery industry, FreshDirect has seen escalating demand for online delivery since the coronavirus outbreak and responded by stepping up its service capabilities.
In late June, the e-grocer launched FreshDirect Express, a two-hour, on-demand delivery service, in parts of New York City. That service was introduced about a month later in metro Washington, D.C., via a partnership with on-demand fulfillment provider Fabric, which marked FreshDirect’s foray into automated micro-fulfillment. The company said Fabric’s robotics technology will bring faster service and a “substantial increase” in order volume capacity, as well as provide a platform for future service upgrades.
Overall, FreshDirect delivers directly to customers in selected markets in seven states, including New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland and Virginia, plus the District of Columbia.