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SPAR China tirelessly supporting local communities

February 11, 2020 IN THE CATEGORY: Community, People, Responsible retailing

SPAR in China has a significant and widespread presence with over 353 stores and 830,043m² of retail space across 33 cities in seven provinces nationwide. In the face of the current coronavirus outbreak, SPAR China regions are tirelessly working to serve the needs of their communities, ensuring the stability of supplies and prices, while also protecting the wellbeing of their customers and employees.

From the start of the outbreak of the coronavirus in January, SPAR China Partners mobilized their strong supply chain networks to secure a reliable supply of daily fresh and grocery products, with a total commitment to offering shoppers high-quality products at stable prices. To meet increased demand from consumers unsure of availability, SPAR China Partners have further strengthened procedures throughout their integrated supply chains to respond to peaks in demand for essential daily groceries. Stores are open seven days a week with extended opening hours in many regions to provide additional accessibility and ease of shopping to our customers. Online ordering options and home delivery services in a significant number of stores offer further support and convenience to shoppers seeking to avoid leaving their homes.

Beyond food items, SPAR in China is supporting the communities it serves by stocking materials such as face masks, hand sanitizers, and disinfection supplies, with a focus on safeguarding availability and pricing. To support prevention and control measures nationwide, SPAR China Partners are also actively assisting health authority initiatives to create a safe and pleasant shopping environment for consumers.

With over 50,000 SPAR employees nationwide, SPAR colleagues at store level are maintaining the highest standards in terms of hygiene precautions for the safety of shoppers, their families, as well as themselves. Across China, SPAR colleagues have been provided with face masks, gloves, and disinfectant supplies, as well as health training sessions.

Further preventative measures include the implementation of additional cleaning and disinfectant schedules. Store floors, shopping baskets, carts, elevators, toilets and other areas are routinely disinfected extensively throughout the day. Attention is also given to the adequate ventilation in stores to ensure that the air in the stores remains fresh. Instore, SPAR China Partners are also safeguarding the well-being of both consumers and employees by offering health checks and temperature monitoring facilities.

SPAR China Partners’ continued measures to cater to the public’s daily needs are not going unnoticed.

In an evening news feature on Monday 3 February on China’s main public television network, CCTV, strong reporting focused on the diligent efforts at SPAR Shandong’s Weihai Supermarket and distribution network.

Reporting on the efforts of instore team members as well as the many colleagues across the supply chain and warehouses, the CCTV feature highlights SPAR China’s commitment to maintaining stable prices and product availability. With considerable stocks of staples such as rice and noodles, SPAR Shandong’s warehouses are in a strong position to keep steady supplies in store.

With the number of infections growing just before the Lunar New Year period, the coronavirus has impacted China during a socially and culturally highly relevant period. To ensure that the New Year’s festivities went uninterrupted for as many people as possible, a great number of SPAR China team members across the nation shortened their own celebratory activities to support the strengthening of supply chains. Team members at SPAR Guangdong, for example, saw considerable successes in supplying stores with additional deliveries of key staples such as rice and noodles during the holiday period.

While upholding the highest standards in hygiene and safety at all stages of the supply chain and all points instore, SPAR Partners have kept excellent customer service high on the agenda. In Beijing, for example, SPAR has extended the end dates of various promotions and shopping discount offers to make sure shoppers don’t have to miss out on these opportunities. Instore activities to mark cultural events such as the Lantern Festival on 8 February, which marks the end of the Lunar New Year celebrations, have been continued to offer customers the pleasant shopping experience SPAR is known for.

SPAR International applauds the measures undertaken by SPAR in China in the wake of this health emergency and the dedication that our local colleagues are exhibiting in providing an essential service to the millions of customers that shop at SPAR every day across China.

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About SPAR China

SPAR was introduced to China in 2004 with the signing of the licence agreement for Shandong Province. This was followed by the addition of more partners, and now SPAR has partners in seven provinces: Shandong, Guangdong, Beijing, Sichuan, Henan, Hebei and Yunnan.

The privately-owned retail chains licensed to operate SPAR have a cooperative relationship in line with the original SPAR mission of working together to reduce costs, maximise sales and increase profits. The SPAR China Partners, whilst part of a leading international group, maintain 100% local ownership.