Shoppers are flocking to online retailer Approved Food to seek cheaper alternatives during the cost of living crisis.
The direct-to-consumer business, which specializes in surplus and short-term food and drink, said it was racking up hundreds of new customers a week as “the search for savings intensifies”.
MD Andy Needham told The Grocer that sales were up 23% in the last three months year-on-year, which generally represented a flatter period for sales due to school holidays, a he declared.
Needham added that while average basket size was down slightly, order volume was up, suggesting customers had less disposable income.
“We buy what we can and try to offer the best value possible,” he said. “At the moment we have very good availability for premium chocolate brands and are seeing most baskets containing them alongside everyday staples.
“Best before dates may be short, but they’re great value, and everyone deserves a treat in tougher times.”
He explained that Approved Food, which currently offers more than 7,000 SKUs, this month recruited six new picking and restocking staff to meet demand and improve operational efficiency.
“We want to make sure we can reduce delivery times to around 48/72 hours depending on customer location,” he said.
Needham explained that the wholesale side of the business, Morris & Son, was also moving “huge volumes” of discounted products.
“On the wholesale side, we deal with independent retailers who will buy products from us to complement their more regular offerings that they get from other parts of the wholesale supply chain.
“We are historically very strong in soft drinks and general groceries and these areas continue to be in demand.”