The purpose of this study group is to clarify the role of consumer co-operatives in the spread of coronavirus infection. The current consumer cooperatives are the market leaders in Japan, as they built the model of the home delivery business. Temperature-controlled products are delivered punctually to the users once a week by the same delivery man. And communication between the organization and union members is more important than anything else.
This study focused on the situation surrounding community-based retail co-ops before and after the COVID-19 pandemic and considered its impact on the co-ops’ supply. The study found that the increase in the supply of community-based retail co-ops is significantly affected by the increase in the number of new members. Further, the increased use of services by existing members was also affected. Due to the state of emergency, the demand for dining out decreased, and the demand for home-cooked and prepared meals increased. Against this backdrop, the supply of food suppliers, including community-based retail co-ops, tended to increase, especially the supply of co-op home deliveries. However, the long-term problems faced by community-based retail co-ops, such as the aging of the members and the difficulty in attracting new interested in food, have not been solved. I argue that this supply is temporarily increasing due to COVID-19, which is an external factor.
Since the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, the supply of the home delivery business has increased more than that of the stores at Co-op Sapporo. This does not necessarily imply that the number of new union members has increased, but it is about half and half of the revival of union members who have not used much. The supply of processed wheat products and frozen foods has increased as has the demand for nest cages, but in the future, it will be necessary to include for cooking fatigue at home and prepared foods for single-person households.
Since the spread of the COVID-19, the supply of the Pal system, which is a thriving delivery service, has risen. The breakdown was about one-third each for the expansion of new members, revival of members, and increase in overall purchases. Although, we were forced to deal with shortages and lottery, communication with union members is the biggest issue and is a pillar of business continuity.
The current consumer co-operatives are the market leaders in Japan, as they built the model of the home delivery business. Temperature-controlled products are delivered punctually to the users once a week. In the changed lifestyle owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, their delivery systems were strongly recognized again. However, even if they built excellent delivery systems, digitalization and innovation for these platforms should be carried out in the future, which would encourage young people to use them and thereby support the residents.