Crazy cheap food prices you can’t ignore

 

 

With coronavirus drying up the restaurant and cafe trade, food suppliers are now selling direct to the public with shoppers able to save up to 55 per cent on their food bill.

Restaurant supply middleman FoodByUs has opened up its platform to Sydney and Melbourne residents who can now order fresh fruit and vegetables, and products unavailable in stores such as pasta and flour and cleaning products from wholesale suppliers.

Frank Madafferi, Director of Simply Fresh Fruit in Dandenong South is one of the suppliers who is using the platform to sell his products during the COVID-19 crisis. Picture: Tony Gough
Frank Madafferi, Director of Simply Fresh Fruit in Dandenong South is one of the suppliers who is using the platform to sell his products during the COVID-19 crisis. Picture: Tony Gough

Some products are available at heavily discounted prices compared to Woolworths such as All Bran, for at $10/kg instead of $12.60/kg, basmati rice for $2.88/kg instead of $4.60/kg and honey for $7.65/kg instead of $17.20/kg.

The wholesale suppliers shoppers can pick from usually service venues such as The Star and Icebergs in Sydney and the Crown Casino and Shangri-La in Melbourne.

Meagan Wuchatsch, 37, a single mother of three from Keilor East received her first home delivery from FoodByUS on Monday and said she'd saved $48 on her normal shop.

The disability care worker said she was able to get some items that weren't available at her local supermarket such as coriander and asparagus.

Empty shelves normally stocked with toilet paper rolls at Woolworths Supermarket in Parramatta, Sydney. Picture: James Gourley
Empty shelves normally stocked with toilet paper rolls at Woolworths Supermarket in Parramatta, Sydney. Picture: James Gourley

 

"I'm a single mum with three kids so not having to take the kids out in not-so-great circumstances when they're scared and not knowing what's going on in the world either is amazing," she said.

"It was easier, I could (order) when the kids where in bed, I could relax and not have to rush around the supermarket worrying about what they're touching or if they're too close to someone because they don't really understand."

Managing director of fruit and vegetable wholesaler Simply Fresh Fruit, Frank Madafferi, 39, said the service had enabled him to retain staff after suffering severe losses due to restaurant closures.

Empty shelves in the baking aisle at the Gladstone Valley Woolworths.
Empty shelves in the baking aisle at the Gladstone Valley Woolworths.

"With the restaurants closing we've lost probably 60 to 70 per cent, maybe touching 80 per cent of our work overnight, which is a massive hit when you've got high overheads, 25 staff, trucks to run," the Melbourne businessman said.

"It hurt severely."

He's now reduced his operating hours from six to three days a week and has existing staff making home deliveries.

"With the FoodByUs platforms going live to the public, it's been great for us to generate cash flow because obviously the payment arrangement is very good," Mr Madafferi said.

"It's been a relief."

Co-founder and managing director of FoodByUs, Ben Lipschitz said the company had worked closely with restaurants and suppliers to "find a solution that will benefit both consumers and businesses".

"This is a trying time for everyone, but as they say, challenge breeds innovation, and collaborations like this will help maintain our industry and ensure we are ready to roar back once we have beaten COVID-19," he said.

Originally published as Crazy cheap food prices you can't ignore



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