The bakery chain Greggs has resumed retailer openings and is bringing again a broader product vary as gross sales slowly recuperate from the coronavirus lockdown.

Greggs, which has 2,039 retailers, mentioned it will open one other 20 this 12 months, primarily in areas reminiscent of petrol forecourts, retail parks and supermarkets moderately than the excessive road. Earlier than the pandemic it had deliberate to open 100 new retailers this 12 months.

In a buying and selling replace the meals retailer mentioned that after a “tough” month in August – when it missed out on the federal government’s eat out to assist out scheme as a result of prospects couldn’t eat in at its retailers – September has been higher. Gross sales this month have returned to 76% of their pre-pandemic ranges and the chain has reopened buyer seating with bodily distancing in 100 of its bigger retailers.

Greggs warned in late July that it must consider making job cuts once the government’s furlough scheme ends on 31 October. To minimise job losses, it’s consulting with commerce unions and worker representatives on decreasing working hours in as much as half its shops. Greggs employs 25,000 folks, nearly all of whom work in its retailers.

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Greggs mentioned: “With enterprise exercise ranges remaining under regular for the foreseeable future we should change the way in which we work to be as productive and versatile as we will with a view to shield as many roles as doable for the long run.”

In response to greater demand, Greggs is bringing again extra of its merchandise, together with a broader sandwich vary and its Belgian buns. It had restricted its product vary to bestsellers reminiscent of its vegan sausage roll to maintain prices down.

Its click-and-collect service is now obtainable in all retailers, permitting prospects to pre-order and pay forward of visiting to gather their order. Greggs can also be rolling out a nationwide supply service in partnership with Simply Eat. In the newest week supply accounted for two.6% of store gross sales.

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