Coronavirus - shopping and food delivery

Supermarkets, shops and food delivery services have adapted how they’re working in response to coronavirus. For example:

  • supermarkets offering priority shopping and delivery slots for people who are shielding at home, elderly or vulnerable
  • online vouchers that you can buy and give to someone to shop on your behalf
  • delivery of essential food boxes
  • in a few cases, telephone ordering
  • wholesale businesses offering their services to individuals
  • local shops and food businesses offering online and telephone shopping, and delivery to your home.

Not all shops are running all these services. Have a look at their websites or phone the store to check what they are offering.

If your usual supermarket isn’t offering what you need, have a look at others in your area. Which? are sharing regular updates on supermarket services.

Local shops and takeaways by area

Follow the links below for lists of local food businesses and what they are offering during the coronavirus pandemic:

Who to contact if you need help

If you need help with food or shopping for essentials, you should seek help from trusted family, friends or neighbours in the first instance.

If you don’t have anyone who could help you, contact your nearest community hub for advice and help getting support from local groups and volunteers.

You can also get in touch with us to ask for a social care needs assessment.

Meals in the community

You may also want to set up a meals delivery service if you’re struggling with shopping. To find support or a meals delivery service, search East Sussex 1Space.

If you are eligible, you may get help with the cost of a ’meals in the community′ service.

Get in touch with us to find out if you are eligible.

Extra support if you are shielding

The advice for people who are shielding is changing on 6 July and 1 August.

The national government plan to pause the advice for people to shield at the end of July. From 1 August, the government is advising you to adopt strict social distancing rather than full shielding measures.

This means food box services from the national Government and East Sussex County Council will come to an end on 31 July.

The NHS volunteer service will still be available to help people with getting food and medicine after this date. People in the shielded group can refer themselves by calling 0808 196 3646.

If you are on the NHS shielded list you can still get access to priority delivery slots from supermarkets if you register before 17 July. You could also be sent a food box of essential supplies (if you have no other way of getting food) until the end of July.

To get a food box or priority delivery slots from supermarkets, answer ‘No’ to the question that asks whether you can get essential supplies delivered.

We are planning to call everyone receiving a Government food box in East Sussex to check they know the service will be ending. We’ll also ask if you need help to get back to doing your own shopping.

Finding other local support

Some local voluntary and community groups can help with shopping.

If you use social media, many local voluntary groups are posting about the support they offer in local community groups.

More information about food or shopping support:

Involving volunteers safely

  • Do not give volunteers your credit or debit card numbers or other financial information. It’s a good idea to pay for the shopping after you get it if you can.
  • If you have Internet access you can buy volunteer e-vouchers from most of the supermarkets to give to a volunteer to buy your shopping.
  • Volunteers must not enter your home unless absolutely necessary. For example, if you can’t put the shopping away yourself.
  • If a volunteer must enter your home, they should wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds on arrival and ensure they maintain a distance of at least 2 metres from you.
  • Only share your phone number or address if you need to and ask for ID if someone you don’t know calls at your home.

Affording food

Food banks

If you are struggling to afford food, food banks could help. You will usually need a food bank voucher referral to use one. Contact your nearest community hub about a referral.

Find a food bank near you on East Sussex 1Space.

Welfare benefits

For help and advice with a benefits issue, please contact the East Sussex Welfare benefits helpline. More on welfare benefits.

You can also contact Citizens Advice for information about money, benefits and debt.