Online giant Amazon has targeted 69 central and east London postcodes to trial its AmazonFresh grocery delivery market.
The service is available to Amazon Prime subscribers for an extra £6.99 and aims to challenge a market dominated by the big four supermarkets and Ocado. Among other areas, the trial covers Canary Wharf, wider Tower Hamlets, the City and parts of Newham and Hackney – although not the Royal Docks (E16).
The extra charge includes unlimited delivery for orders above £40 but deliveries under the threshold will cost £3.99 each with one-hour delivery slots between 7am and 11pm seven days a week, with same-day delivery available from 5pm for orders placed by 1pm.
AmazonFresh has been operating in US for nine years but with market expected to double to £17.2billion in the UK to 2020 has seized the opportunity to step in at a time of price wars between the big names and the German discounters Aldi and Lidl.
The company has tied up a deal with Morrisons to provide wholesale ambient, fresh and frozen products. Customers could now order their full weekly grocery shop including fresh fruit and vegetables, meat, seafood and dairy products from an initial selection of more than 130,000 items from a distribution depot in Bow.
Major brands including Morrisons, Coca-Cola, Kellogg’s, Danone, Warburtons, Walkers and Yeo Valley are involved.
Ajay Kavan, vice president of AmazonFresh, said: “We are launching with a comprehensive offer in a limited area and will take our time to hone and improve our service.
“Britain’s grocery market has been convulsed in recent years by changing shopping habits, the rise of German discounters Aldi and Lidl and a brutal price war and analysts see AmazonFresh as a potential challenge to the whole industry over time.
“We will be very methodical and considered in how we roll this service out further in the UK.”
Amazon has so far focussed on selling canned and packaged goods.