With the onset of COVID-19, new trends of online shopping and delivery from restaurants, supermarkets, and now c-stores, have surged, with no sign of slowing down any time soon.
The popularity of off-premise dining had already begun among c-stores prior to COVID-19, with products focused primarily on snacks and prepared hot food items like pizza and breakfast sandwiches. Since the pandemic, c-stores find themselves delivering food staples along with both hot prepared food items and fresh-refrigerated prepared foods, like premade salads, sandwiches, and desserts—all delivered to a customer’s front door.
The cost of creating an online app and delivery services can be too costly for some operators, while others have formed partnerships with third-party services. The challenge for most operators isn’t expanding delivery services, but rather ensuring deliveries arrive without compromising food safety. As consumers become more reliant on shopping online through apps or websites, they expect the same quality, convenience, and transparency that is provided when ordering from their favorite restaurant.
In fact, 68 percent of adults say they are more likely to purchase takeout or delivery food now than they were prior to the pandemic, according to data from the National Restaurant Association’s State of the Industry report released in January 2021.
To remain competitive, deliveries from c-stores must be protected from theft and contamination, offering customers peace of mind. Having safety procedures in place is essential to protecting both the customer and store. One easy-to-use, effective way to deter theft and tampering and to prevent contamination is to use tamper-evident labels. These labels ensure that food is appropriately labeled and handled during delivery, utilizing an exceptionally strong adhesive to keep the label attached to the package.
Using a tamper-evident seal shows customers that your c-store values and prioritizes safety and security. TamperSeal labels, for example, are offered by DayMark Safety Systems and adhere safely and securely to a wide variety of packaging material. Each label has security slits that cause the label to lose its integrity if someone attempts to open the container. If the seal is broken upon delivery, it is a clear indication that the food may have been tampered with.
Not all tamper-evident labels are created equal, however—some offer additional benefits that go beyond the security aspect. TamperSeal labels, for instance, are compatible with the MenuCommand® platform, which allows information such as a company logo, a web address, safe handling instructions, date and time the food was prepared, marketing material, and nutritional and other customized information to be printed directly onto the label.
As off-premise dining continues to grow in popularity across the c-store industry, using tamper-evident labels will remain a critical factor to its success by increasing customer peace of mind and assurance that a food order has remained untouched while in transit to its destination.