Bengaluru-based food delivery major Swiggy has partnered with the Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry (MoHUA) to enable street vendors to go online. As part of the partnership, Swiggy will be onboarding street food vendors on its platform, giving them online access to its consumers and help these vendors grow their businesses.
“The street vendors will be helped with PAN and FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) registration, training on technology/ partner app usage, menu digitisation and pricing, hygiene and packaging best practices. Upon the successful completion of the pilot, MoHUA and Swiggy plan to expand this initiative across the country in phases,” said the statement.
According to the Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry (MoHUA), in the pilot phase, Swiggy will be on-boarding 250 street food vendors in Delhi, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Indore and Varanasi. Later, it will be rolled out in other parts of the country.
The partnership is part of Prime Minister Street Vendor’s AtmaNirbhar Nidhi (PM SVANidhi) Scheme launched on June 1st, 2020 to help over 50 lakh street vendors impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.
In a first of its kind initiative, the Ministry has coordinated with the key stakeholders including Municipal Corporations, FSSAI, Swiggy and GST officials to ensure that necessary prerequisites are completed for this initiative, said the statement.
The move comes almost a month after Prime Minister Narendra Modi had spoken about introducing an online delivery platform for street food vendors to help them sustain during the pandemic.
Swiggy Feels The Pinch Of Pandemic Disruption
With its food delivery business witnessing a decline in revenues amid the pandemic, Swiggy had undertaken a realignment exercise. The has to date laid off nearly 1500 employees across operations, marketing, cloud kitchen and product teams.
During the lockdown, Swiggy partnered with retail grocery stores like Vishal Mega Mart and FMCG player Marico to deliver products. It also offers to deliver essentials and other daily-use items through Swiggy Stores. Moreover, Swiggy, along with its rival Zomato, has started home delivery of alcoholic beverages and liquor across Jharkhand and Kolkata.
Swiggy has also been embroiled in a standoff with delivery executives in Hyderabad and Chennai. The foodtech unicorn has faced protests from executives over low wages.
In a press release issued by the Indian Federation of App-based Transport Workers (IFAT) national general secretary Shaik Salauddin, the delivery executives working with the company have alleged that during the Covid-19 lockdown, Swiggy reduced minimum earnings per order from INR 35 to INR 15. Further, the delivery executives have claimed that since the lockdown began, the company removed its performance-based monthly incentives of up to INR 5,000.