On the 10th of December, food delivery platform Swiggy announced that its Street Food Vendors scheme, which is said to support 36,000 sellers across 125 Indian cities will be expanded after a successful pilot run. Under the AtmaNibhar Nidhi (PM SVANidhi) Scheme, the food tech giant has come together with the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) to add street food sellers to its website. A press release from the company notes that the pilot programme was carried out in Ahmedabad, Varanasi, Chennai, Delhi and Indore, where 300 street vendors were on board. They have ensured that all of the 36000 vendors being onboarded have been approved by Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI).
Swiggy also recognises the changes and challenges faced by street food suppliers in the aftermath of the pandemic, with the aim of bringing all kinds of culinary experiences to the door, including street food, an integral part of India's cultural and economic context and often unique to each region. Swiggy is using its network and wide delivery fleet to securely and hygienically carry street food to the doorsteps of consumers in an attempt to provide tangible support to street food suppliers to revive their business and give much-needed exposure.
Recognizing the importance that Swiggy places on the wellbeing of its customers, no vendors are being onboarded without FSSAI registration. FSSAI rules have some hygiene requirements that do not apply for street vendors. The street vendors need to be educated on good hygiene practises in order to receive a valid FSSAI registration. In collaboration with FSSAI, Swiggy will now promote Food Safety Training and Certification (FOSTAC) for street vendors. In effect, customers are spoiled for more choices than ever while being rest assured about safety and simultaneously, this helps to improve the conditions of street vendors who were amongst ones who lost the most at the hands of the pandemic.
Swiggy aims to provide street vendors a forum for better exploration in order to revive business affected by the pandemic with the PM SVANidhi scheme. Swiggy states that, in partnership with the PM SVANidhi scheme, they aim to provide street food vendors with working business loans, while also boosting their business through online ordering. Knowing that educating vendors on technological knowledge such as managing the app, digitization of the menu and pricing is equally critical, Swiggy undertakes virtual one-on-one training and takes them through the process of accepting orders on the app without compromising on customer experience. Swiggy has built a special destination on its app to increase traction and ensure the suppliers get enough orders, where consumers can discover their favourite street-food suppliers and order the exclusive food that each region has to offer. This project illustrates how start-ups can partner closely with the government to even more creatively solve specific issues affecting India’s economy and people.
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