Amazon is to take on another 75,000 new staff and stop accepting orders from new online grocery customers in the US as it grapples with surging demand.
The etail titan is encouraging American workers who have lost their jobs because of coronavirus to apply for the new vacancies.
It comes less than a month after Amazon hired 100,000 new staff to help it fulfil priority online orders for food and medical equipment for its existing customers.
Despite that hiring spree, Amazon still has a waiting list for new customers and has stopped accepting new online grocery customers in the US, according to Reuters.
It has also reduced hours at some Whole Foods stores to prioritise orders from existing customers during the coronavirus outbreak and plans to ease temporary restrictions on non-essential goods being sold on its platforms.
Millions of Americans have lost their jobs as a result of coronavirus – more than 16 million have submitted unemployment claims since the outbreak.
Amazon said the fresh wave of recruitment for warehouse roles could help workers in sectors such as hospitality, restaurants and travel.
“We welcome anyone out of work to join us at Amazon until things return to normal and their past employer is able to bring them back,” the etailer said.
Amazon hopes the new employees will help it grapple with a surge in demand following lockdowns across the US.
The etailer has had to stop accepting grocery orders from new customers, instead placing them on a waiting list while it ramps up capacity.
Over the past few weeks, Amazon has almost doubled the number of Whole Foods stores offering grocery collection from 80 locations to more than 150.
The retail Goliath also plans to shorten opening hours at some Whole Foods stores so its employees can fulfil online orders at a quicker rate.
Amazon offers grocery delivery services Amazon Fresh and Amazon Prime Now from its own warehouses and Whole Foods stores, but last month it temporarily suspended the Prime Pantry delivery service, which sells ambient grocery products.
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