Lockdown was a frustrating time for everyone. We were only allowed out for grocery shopping and other essential services. Supermarkets had a field day with the food monopoly.
But there is one local business that is receiving praise for going the extra mile for customers-Jervois Foodmarket, owned and run by husband and wife, Sanjay and Rashmi Patel.
Throughout the lockdown I visited Jervois Foodmarket regularly, and always felt safer than if I had ventured to a supermarket. The Patels increased their range of food available, including a big increase in fresh fruit and vegetables. Their prices were very fair too.
With their one person in-one person out policy, it gave us a chance to chat, at a safe distance of course, while we waited in the queue. Incidently that queue was never more than four or five long. I soon realised that Sanjay and Rashmi were attracting new custom from further afield than usual. I chatted to a woman from Westmere, who told me Jervois Foodmarket’s range of food and vegetables, wine and beer, was superior to her local dairies and superettes in Westmere. Others, including me, praised Sanjay and Rashmi for their smiling, positive service. It was clearly the personal dedication to excellent service that gave Sanjay and Rashmi’s business the edge.
The Patels have been in their Jervois Road, Herne Bay, shop for four years, and they wanted Ponsonby News to thank local residents for their wonderful support during this difficult time. They now have ideas for change and development, putting into action some of the suggestions from customers comments and purchases during lockdown. For example, fresh fruit and vegetables were very popular and will have a more prominent place at Jervois Foodmarket from now on.
Sanjay and Rashmi thought the lockdown timing was about right, and hopefully community transmission of the virus has been prevented.
As the ‘new normal’ returns, the Patels can be proud of their service, and their keen dedication to their community, during the past couple of months. But that service is the ‘old normal’ for them, and I know it will continue as we edge out of the crisis.
Sanjay and Rashmi are a charming couple, with wide smiles across their faces most of the time. Service businesses do best with charismatic owners and staff, and Sanjay and Rashmi Patel certainly have charisma, along with friendly, bubbly personalities.
Congratulations you two, Ponsonby News is very proud to have such an important local service business owned and run by such lovely people.(JOHN ELLIOTT)
Jervois Foodmarket, 220 Jervois Road, T: 09 376 3587
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