In the wake of coronavirus pandemic, e-commerce tech giant Amazon has informed third-party sellers that it will temporarily stop shipments of non-essential items to warehouses in a bid to prioritise shipments of medical supplies and other high-demand household goods. The moratorium will last from March 17 to April 5 in both the US and Europe.
This announcement applies to sellers who participate in the Fulfilled by Amazon program. As per the company claims, the changes do not apply for the orders before the announcement, and the product en route to the warehouse will be accepted as usual.
Amazon spokesperson said in a statement:
“We are seeing increased online shopping, and as a result, some products such as household staples and medical supplies are out of stock. With this in mind, we are temporarily prioritizing household staples, medical supplies, and other high-demand products coming into our fulfillment centers so we can more quickly receive, restock and ship these products to customers.”
For the uninitiated, Fulfillment by Amazon is a service provided by the American multinational technology company based in Seattle that includes storage, packaging, and shipping assistance to sellers. This platform takes off burden and stress from sellers and allows them to be more flexible in their selling practices.
Amazon spokesperson said:
“We understand this is a change for our selling partners and appreciate their understanding as we temporarily prioritize these products for customers.”
People around the world are tapping into the digital platform as the government put forward new restrictions on moving around, including social-distancing procedures. Notably, Amazon has announced that it plans to add a whopping 100,000 warehouse workers to keep up with orders.
On the other hand, at least five workers at Amazon warehouses in Europe have tested positive for COVID-19. The cases are in Spain and Italy, two areas that have been struck hard in this coronavirus outbreak. It’s worth reiterating that Italy is in a nationwide lockdown and Spain declaring a state of emergency.
Amazon spokesperson said:
“We are going to great lengths to keep the buildings extremely clean and help employees practice necessary precautions such as social distancing and other measures. Those who don’t want to come to work are welcome to use the paid and unpaid time off options, and we support them in doing so. “
The company is following all guidance from health officials related to operating its buildings, the spokesperson added. Also, Amazon said it would provide up to two weeks of pay through the “Amazon Relief Fund” to all employees diagnosed with COVID-19. It’s worth mentioning that, the news of the cases was first reported by Bloomberg.
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