"Since late February, Foodstuffs has hired an additional 1,500 staff to help meet the customer demand we’re experiencing due to COVID-19 lockdown. This increased demand has opened a door for our owners to take on new team members whose previous employment may have been adversely affected by the outbreak. In times like these, locals helping locals is incredibly important and it’s great to see the community pulling together.

Each store has its own unique needs, and our recruitment teams have been able to ‘matchmake’ new employees with stores to fulfil roles that address their specific needs. The greatest need the majority of our stores need are fulfilling and delivering online orders.

New World Eastridge is one of many stores which is experiencing a surge in demand for online orders, and recently took on new employees who were former flight attendants. These new employees pick and fulfil online orders during the night shift when the store is closed, enabling the store to accommodate more online orders and removing more staff from the store during the day to ease customer traffic flow in aisles.  

PAK'nSAVE Taupo has taken on 12 people from Taupo’s adventure tourism industry and three from its hospitality industry to help meet demand and ease the burden on the wider team. 

PAK’nSAVE Sylvia Park has taken on over 25 new employees on fixed term contracts, many from local retailers that have faced reduced hours or have temporarily ceased trading. These employees have taken on various roles throughout the store from replenishing shelves, packing bread in the bakery and assisting at checkout. PAK’nSAVE Kilbirnie has hired 20 new staff as well to help with increased demand.

Foodstuffs is also working with companies such as Air New Zealand, Flight Centre, the Restaurant Association and other tourism and hospitality businesses, and redeploying employees to stores where job opportunities are available.

Our team, including our newest team members, are an important part of our commitment to ensure all New Zealanders’ grocery needs are met as the country unites to fight COVID-19.  

Stickman joins Instagram

Stickman might be late to the party, but he always makes an entrance, as PAK’nSAVE is making its Instagram debut today on @instickman

“We researched and leveraged our insights to ensure we were making the right decision launching Stickman on Instagram in the current environment,” said Kazalbash. “Most 25-49-year-olds are reporting the highest levels of ‘feeling scared’ at present, with 18-34s having to adapt their lifestyles the most in the current climate. These groups are looking for an escape and new ways to stay positive. Staying digitally connected with PAK’nSAVE on Instagram will hopefully help alleviate some of the uncertainty they’re feeling now.”


New Zealanders have certainly reinvigorated their love of baking during lockdown and flour continues to fly off the shelves just as soon as we get the stock onto them. Our suppliers are going as fast as they can to produce more flour than they ever have done before. In fact, compared to the same four weeks in 2019, New Zealanders have purchased an extra 1 million kg’s of flour, which is absolutely phenomenal. We encourage customers who have a good stock of flour to work through what they’ve got, so everyone can purchase what they need, for what may very well be our nation’s new favourite hobby. 


In terms of hair care:

  • Across the entire hair colour category for our key supermarket brands (New World, Four Square, PAK'nSAVE), we have seen an increase of ~340%
  • Four Square shoppers seem to be the most passionate about their hair colour with sales up across the board in the region of 390%, but our blond customers are clearly not keen on letting the natural roots shine through with sales of blond colour up 550%
  • Overall customers are 50% more likely to buy a semi-permanent versus a permanent hair colour – perhaps not quite trusting in their own hair dying abilities here and going with the safety of less permanent

And it’s not just hair colour that customers have taken on at home. With access to beauticians and nail bars no longer an option there have been some big lifts in other categories such as:

  • Nail care is up across the brands in the region od 450% - and PAK'nSAVE customers are the most passionate about their nails with sales of nail care products up 565%
  • Sales of wax and depilatory products is up 50% so despite the fact NZers are in lockdown we are clearly not letting ourselves go

Turns out the same cannot be said for our Kiwi men though, who seem to be embracing the benefits of staying at home, skin care for men is in a small decline of -1.7% perhaps supporting anecdotal rises in facial hair growth hence less need to moisturise."