The Co-op is launching a same-day food delivery service from 650 stores, serving 100 towns and cities.
A trial limited to London and Manchester but will this month be expanded to Brighton, Bournemouth and Southampton before a nationwide rollout.
The Co-op, one of the world’s largest co-operatives, employs more than 60,000 people, operates 2,600 shops and supplies more than 8,000 other outlets since its purchase of Nisa and a five-year wholesale supply deal with Costcutter. It added 100 new stores last year.
Shoppers can place orders up to 8pm for a delivery slot between 9pm and 10pm the same day. The mutual is using a third-party bicycle hire firm to transport smaller deliveries. Deliveries of more than £15 will be free.
Supermarkets have faced challenges with online orders because of the costs involved. Analysts say it costs upwards of £10 to pick and fulfil a grocery order, which has squeezed margins.
The Co-op is expanding its partnership with Deliveroo to deliver groceries in less than 30 minutes and is extending the service to 400 stores in 100 towns.