Fast growing health food supermarket, Planet Organic has achieved COVID-19 secure status for all its 15 London locations.
Restructuring its offer overnight to meet an increase in demand for its organic food, supplements and vitamins both in-store and online, Planet Organic called on the support of Food Alert to provide food hygiene and health & safety advice.
Following a rigorous site by site ‘virtual’ auditing process by Food Alert, Planet Organic and its As Nature Intended sites are now COVID-19 Standard Certified.
Planet Organic’s food services director, Caroline Ottoy, said: “Like everyone else in retail, our business was turned upside down overnight. Demand for our healthy products rocketed and we had to make sure that we were well positioned to cope and look after the health and safety of our teams and customers.
“The certification scheme has been well received, not only by our 450 employees who know we have done everything we can to make their workplace as safe as possible, but for our customers who are confident that we are delivering the highest standards possible.”
To gain Food Alert’s COVID-19 secure standard, Planet Organic undertook a detailed risk assessment that covered all the touchpoints that need to be cleaned to the type of sanitiser to use, managing deliveries of stock safely and a staff sign-in questionnaire.
“What I found surprising was that PPE was not the most important control, but all the steps that we should take in terms of deep cleaning, social distancing and task checklists to keep people safe, with PPE being the final link in the chain.
“We have invested heavily in inserting bespoke till screens, floor vinyls and face masks are worn where social distancing isn’t possible.”
Food Alert’s operations director, Mike Williams, said: “It has been a pleasure working with the Planet Organic team, who very early on recognised that employee and customer confidence was everything when it came to managing coronavirus and protecting their business.
“Our certification scheme has been designed to meet the highest standards taking operators above and beyond government guidelines, offering the reassurance that employees and consumers are seeking when working, shopping, or eating out. Importantly, it’s an ongoing process as individuals can feedback any concerns anonymously through a QR code, so the venue can respond and act upon it quickly.”