Amazon grocery delivery has been hit or miss for many shoppers. As demand continues to surge, Amazon announced that new Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods market customers will have to sign up for an invitation before they can shop these services.
"We are temporarily asking new Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods Market delivery and pickup customers to sign up for an invitation to use online grocery delivery and pickup," wrote Amazon in a blog post. "We're increasing capacity each week and will invite new customers to shop every week." The news comes just weeks after rumors circulated that Amazon Prime Day may be pushed to August.
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In that same blog post, Amazon also said it's adjusting store hours for select Whole Foods Markets so that the stores can focus exclusively on fulfilling Amazon grocery orders made.
Here in New York City, we received an e-mail from our local Whole Foods Market at Bryant Park with the following info:
"Starting April 15, the Whole Foods Market store at Bryant Park will be temporarily closed to focus on Prime grocery deliveries and help us fulfill more orders. We apologize for any inconvenience as we do our best to serve you responsibly during this critical time."
Amazon grocery delivery is experiencing an unprecedented surge in demand. Last month it temporarily suspended Prime Pantry for about a week, before Prime Pantry came back online. However, more than a week later many shoppers are still experiencing delays with the service — if they can even find available grocery delivery slots.
On March 16, Amazon said it would hire an additional 100,000 people to help meet demand. In addition, it said it would invest more than $350 million to support employees and partners during the COVID-19 crisis. Today, the online giant said it would hire an extra 75,000 workers in addition to the 100,000 has already hired.