COVID-19 latest updates

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Below are the most recent updates from Coles on the impact of COVID-19.

2 July 2020

Additional product limits for Victorian, Tasmanian stores until chilled distribution centre returns to full capacity

From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Coles has worked closely with government health authorities to protect our customers, team members and the broader community by implementing all recommended workplace health and safety measures.

Following a number of team members at our Laverton chilled distribution centre in Victoria returning positive tests, Coles is working with the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services to have all workers employed at the facility tested for COVID.

Coles has also worked with the Victorian Health Department to conduct contact tracing for positive cases, and as a further precautionary measure a significant proportion of team members at the Laverton distribution centre have been asked to self-isolate at home.

Of the team members who have tested positive, none have been present at the Laverton distribution centre since June 25.

Coles has extensive safety protocols in place at the Laverton distribution centre which comply with government guidelines, and the facility has been deep cleaned daily over the past week. 

The Victorian Government is working with Coles to ensure the distribution centre can remain open and keep food on shelves, and has confirmed all necessary precautions and steps have been taken by Coles to ensure the site has been appropriately cleaned and that relevant measures are in place regarding testing and isolation of team members.

While the Laverton distribution centre has been able to maintain operations, the reduced number of available team members has temporarily impacted our ability to replenish our Victorian stores with chilled and fresh produce lines.

Our supply chain team has put in place a number of contingency measures, including re-routing some stock through Coles distribution centres in other states, introducing pop-up distribution centres in Victoria, and working with some suppliers to deliver products direct to our Victorian stores. 

Coles is also implementing some additional temporary purchase limits in Victoria to help more of our Victorian customers access the products they need.

The following two-pack purchase limits have now been implemented at all Coles supermarkets, Coles Express and Coles Online in Victoria and Tasmania, as well as Lavington, Albury and Deniliquin in NSW.

Two packs per customer:

Chilled product limits (from Laverton DC)

  • Fresh Milk
  • Cheese
  • Butter
  • Margarine
  • Chicken Breast
  • Chciken Thighs
  • Prepacked Carrots
  • Prepacked Potatoes

Ambient and frozen product limits

  • Canned Tomatoes
  • Canned Beans
  • Canned Garden Veg 
  • Pasta Sauce 
  • Canned Fruit
  • Canned Baked Beans and Spaghetti
  • Canned Meat
  • Cheese
  • Frozen Fruit and Veg (including Potato)

These new limits are in addition to the two-pack limits introduced for customers of our supermarkets, Coles Express and Coles Online in Victoria and on the NSW border on June 24, which remain in place.

Two packs per customer:

  • Pasta
  • Mince
  • Flour
  • Eggs 
  • Hand sanitiser
  • UHT milk
  • Sugar Rice

A one-pack limit continues to apply to toilet paper and paper towel at Coles supermarkets, Coles Online and Coles Express in all states.

Our team is working hard with our suppliers to replenish our stores as soon as possible, and we apologise to customers of our Victorian and NSW border stores who may find some chilled and fresh produce lines are temporarily out of stock.

The health and safety of our team members remains a top priority for Coles and we look forward to welcoming our Laverton team members currently in isolation back to work as soon as they receive necessary clearances.

To help us provide a safe shopping experience for all, we ask that customers continue to treat our team members with respect, buy only what they need, continue observing social distancing in stores, make use of the sanitising stations at the entrance, and plan their visit so they can be ‘speedy shoppers’.

28 June 2020

Coles working with Vic Health Dept after positive recorded by worker at distribution centre

Coles is working with the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services to conduct contact tracing after being notified of a positive COVID test for a worker employed at Coles’ Laverton Distribution Centre in Victoria.

Coles has been working to facilitate testing of all team members at the site after two distribution centre team members tested positive while self-isolating with family members who had returned positive tests.

The Health Department has advised Coles that a worker employed at the site has returned a positive result. This follows the announcement of a single positive test returned yesterday and brings the total number of positives among workers employed at the distribution centre to four. Coles is working with the Health Department to conduct contact tracing for the new case and to isolate any close contacts.

None of the positive tests are from Coles store team members. 

The health and safety of our team members and customers remains our highest priority and we continue to work with government experts to ensure we are following the latest advice.

While Coles’ existing cleaning procedures comply with government hygiene and safety guidelines and have been described by Victoria’s Deputy Chief Health Officer as “an exceedingly comprehensive suite of infection control activities,” we have now implemented a number of additional safety measures at the distribution centre.

This includes increased frequency of deep cleans of the facility, additional cleaning of high-traffic areas, and adjustments to shift times to minimise the number of team members utilising break room facilities at the same time.

All Coles distribution centres including the Laverton site already have thermal imaging cameras and contactless thermometers to check the temperature of all team members and transport providers prior to entering the facility, as well as sanitiser stations at all entrances, exits and throughout the facility, and all machinery is sanitised between uses.

While team members at the distribution centre generally do not work in close proximity due to the size of the site and the nature of their roles, Coles has also reinforced the need for social distancing with visible guidelines and marshalling throughout the facility. 

We wish to assure customers that health authorities have not identified food and groceries as a potential source of infection, and distribution centre team members do not manually handle individual grocery products, which are packaged in larger crates and cartons during distribution.  

26 June 2020

Purchase limits implemented at Coles stores nationwide

Coles is implementing purchase limits to ensure more customers have access to staple items.

Effective from today, the following limits apply at all Coles supermarkets and Coles Express stores, as well as Coles Online.

One pack per customer

  • Toilet paper
  • Paper towel

Additional purchase limits announced earlier this week for stores in Victoria and on the NSW border continue to apply. For Victoria, the pack limits are:

One pack per customer

  • Toilet paper
  • Paper towel

Two packs per customer

  • Hand sanitiser 
  • Flour
  • Eggs
  • Sugar
  • Mince
  • UHT milk
  • Rice
  • Pasta 

We ask that customers continue to shop normally so that everyone can have access to the food and groceries they need.

25 June 2020

Second COVID-19 case at Coles Laverton Distribution Centre

Coles is working with Health Dept to provide COVID tests for team members.

Coles is working closely with the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services after a second team member at Coles’ Laverton distribution centre in Victoria tested positive for COVID-19.

Both team members tested positive while self-isolating after family members returned positive tests. Any team members identified through contact tracing as having had close contact with them have been instructed to self-isolate and be tested for COVID-19.

A number of additional team members have chosen to self-isolate and undergo testing, and Coles supports their decision.

Coles is now working with the Health Department to facilitate COVID testing of team members who work at the site as quickly as possible.

While Coles’ standard cleaning procedures comply with government hygiene and safety guidelines, a number of additional measures are being implemented at the site.

This includes increased frequency of deep cleans of the facility, additional cleaning of high-traffic areas, and adjustments to shift times to minimise the number of team members utilising break room facilities at the same time.

All Coles distribution centres including the Laverton site already have thermal imaging cameras and hand-held contactless thermometers to check the temperature of all team members and transport providers prior to entering the facility.

Coles already has sanitiser stations at all entrances and exits and throughout the facility, and machinery operated by team members is sanitised between uses.

While team members at the distribution centre generally do not work in close proximity due to the size of the site and the nature of their roles, Coles has also reinforced the need for social distancing with visible guidelines throughout the facility. 

The safety of our team members and customers is our number one priority. We wish to assure customers that health authorities have not identified food and groceries as a potential source of infection, and distribution centre team members do not manually handle individual grocery products, which are packaged in larger crates and cartons during distribution.  

Click here for more information on the measures Coles is taking to help stop the spread of COVID-19. If you would like more information on COVID-19 you can call the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

25 June 2020

COVID-19 update for Coles Victoria supermarkets

With the recent increase in COVID-19 cases in Victoria, please be assured that the health and safety of our customers and our team members remains our top priority, and we are committed to ensuring all customers can access the everyday products they need.

We’ve maintained extra cleaning throughout the store

We are continuing to conduct additional cleaning in high contact areas of the store, including trolleys, baskets, checkout and self-service areas, and pin pads. We have also installed screens at our main lane checkouts as well as guards between each self-checkout.

We still ask that you wash your hands before going shopping and make use of the sanitiser station located at the front of every store – it’s stocked with hand sanitiser and disinfectant wipes to use on your trolley or basket.

You can find tips on shopping safely in our stores in our ‘Coles Speedy Shopper’ video here, including how to use our product locator app.

Ensuring everyone has access to what they need

Following discussion with the Federal and Victoria Governments, we’re temporarily introducing measures in all our Victorian supermarkets and Coles Express convenience stores* to ensure everyone can access the everyday products they need. From today, there is a limit of on the following items.

One pack per customer:

  • Toilet paper
  • Paper towel

Two packs per customer: 

  • Hand sanitiser 
  • Flour
  • Eggs
  • Sugar
  • Mince
  • UHT milk
  • Rice
  • Pasta 

Our team members are working as hard as possible to keep shelves stocked; you’ll be able to find further information on product restrictions in-store.

* Limits also apply to Coles supermarkets in Lavington, Albury and Deniliquin in NSW, and Coles Express convenience stores in Albury, Albury Nth, Deniliquin Nth and Tocumwal.  Limits apply nationally to our online shopping services.

Have you tried our digital catalogue featuring half price specials and contactless home shopping service?

We know how important the Coles catalogue is in planning your shop and helping you get the best value products each week. Our digital version is always available online here and contains all our weekly half price specials, dinner inspiration and seasonal recipes. You can sign up to the catalogue here and be the first to shop it each week.

Our online shopping service also offers contactless Click&Collect or Home Delivery options, and if you’ve never shopped online with us before, we’ve created a step-by-step guide and video to make it as easy as possible.  Information on all these services can be found here.

Please continue to treat our team with respect and understanding, and only buy what you need so everyone can access the food and groceries they need.

29 May 2020

Helping make life easier

Since the outbreak of COVID-19, Coles team members have served over 200 million customers with pride and care. It’s reassuring that we are returning to a sense of normality in everyday life as restrictions are eased and children begin returning to school. We're pleased to announce some new initiatives at Coles to help make life easier for our customers.

Packing and replacing recyclable bags at the checkout

As we’ve now got a number of measures in-store to ensure a safe environment for customers and team members, from Monday June 1 we’ll now be able to offer bag packing again at the checkout. This is a service that a lot of customers find helpful. We also recognise that some customers will want to continue packing their own bags during this time.

If you are bringing your own bags when shopping, to help with ongoing hygiene practices please ensure these are clean. If you’d like a replacement bag when at the checkout, until Monday 15 June we’ll swap your bag for a new recyclable Coles Better Bag. We know how important recycling is to our customers, and all soft plastic bags we replace can be recycled in the REDcycle bins that can always be found at the front of all our stores.

Protecting the community remains a priority for us, and we ask that all customers and team members keep observing social distance guidelines. We now have sanitiser stations at the front of all stores for customers to sanitise their hands as they enter, assisted checkouts are cleaned after every transaction and Perspex screens have been installed at every register. We continue to encourage all customers and team members to download the Health Department’s COVIDSafe app, and to download our Coles product locator app to be a Coles Speedy Shopper in-store!

All product restrictions now lifted!

We're pleased to let you know that we’ve now lifted all product restrictions that were put in place due to the pandemic buying back in March, including antibacterial wipes and liquid hand wash. This is a great result for our customers, team members and supplier partners and we thank them all for their patience and hard work over the last couple of months. We would also like to thank the state and federal governments who helped us get our deliveries to stores as quickly as possible during the height of the crisis. 

Don’t forget to register for our digital catalogue for all our weekly half price specials, dinner inspiration and recipe hacks!

22 May 2020

Coles Express Carlton and Fitzroy Cleared To Trade

A team member who works at Coles Express’ Carlton and Fitzroy stores is self-isolating after testing positive for COVID-19 yesterday.

Coles Express worked with the Victorian Department of Health to conduct contact tracing, and any other team members identified as having had close contact have been instructed to self-isolate and seek medical treatment should they display any symptoms.

Coles Express works closely with State and Federal Health Departments to ensure our stores and team members are taking all recommended measures to minimise the risk of transmission. As an added precaution, Coles Express has conducted an additional deep clean of the store overnight.  

The Victorian Department of Health has confirmed the store can continue to trade and the risk of transmission for customers and team members is very low.

Click here for more information on the measures Coles is taking to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

8 may 2020

Coles Community Box - now available to all customers

As part of our commitment to support all vulnerable community members during this challenging time, we’ve now made our Coles Community Box available to all customers. Along with our Coles Online Priority Service (COPS) customers, any Coles Online customer can now purchase a box to support family, friends or neighbours who need access to groceries.

Delivered direct to homes in two packages by Australia Post for $80, the Coles Community Box contains grocery items and household items for healthy meals and snacks, plus some everyday essentials.

7 May 2020

Finding the new normal

Longer hours making it easier for everyone to shop

As panic buying now seems like yesterday’s news, and as product restrictions are lifted, Coles from tomorrow will be extending trading hours for everyone, including opening over 200 stores earlier at 6am*. The changes are being made to help those returning to work or schools, and parents and carers who are busy at home schooling their children. This means Coles Community Hour will end as we welcome all customers back whenever stores are open. 

Thank you to the senior citizens and emergency services customers who made this a successful initiative when panic buying was in full swing and product supply limited. We’re delighted to see so many Coles customers now using our online service, including the vulnerable, with more delivery slots available than ever before. Check out this step by step guide to see how easy it is. 

*where state laws allow. Please check your local store's trading hours here.

 

Lifting even more product restrictions

From tomorrow we will be lifting restrictions on products such as pasta, pasta sauce, canned tomatoes and sugar. We ask that you continue to only buy what you need, and if we all continue to do this, we should be able to lift further product restrictions in coming weeks. The latest information on product restrictions can always be found here. 

 

Helping in the community

Coles is proud to be supporting FightMND again this year, an organisation committed to helping find effective treatments and ultimately a cure for people living with Motor Neurone Disease. As well as selling the famous FightMND ‘Big Freeze’ beanie in our stores, we will also be donating 10c from the sale of every Coles Brand Fresh Pork product from the meat department until Tuesday 16th June. You can find more information on FightMND at fightmnd.org.au.

 

Celebrating the Mums in our lives 

There has probably never been a better time to thank all the Mums in our lives! Currently there are so many Mums who are balancing work, parenting, home-schooling and all the other roles they have to play during this difficult time. While we can’t celebrate like we usually might this Mother’s Day, we can all still plan to spoil the Mums in our lives over the next week with a home cooked meal, a bunch of flowers, or even a well-deserved sleep in!

We have some beautiful fresh flowers arriving in our stores from today, a range of delicious new bakery treats for breakfast in bed, as well as baking and meal ideas in the Mother’s Day section here. You can visit the special Mother’s Day edition of our digital catalogue here for a range of great value gift ideas, plus don’t miss ‘What’s For Dinner?’ during the Channel 7 evening news 6-7pm every night this week for Mother’s Day recipe ideas – including Curtis Stone tomorrow night!

1 May 2020

The COVIDSafe app

Coles is encouraging all customers and team members to download the Health Department’s COVIDSafe app. The app is only designed to alert users if they have had close contact (15 minutes or more within 1.5 metres) with another person who tests positive for COVID-19.

We have now completed more than 100 million customer transactions since the outbreak of COVID-19 and whilst Supermarkets adhering to the Government’s social distancing guidelines are considered low risk, we believe the app will provide an even safer environment by allowing any potential exposure situations to be identified and managed as quickly as possible. You can read more about the app here.

28 April 2020

Ensuring all customers have access to essential items.

We are working very closely with our existing supply partners, as well as creating new local partnerships, to help keep up with increased demand for certain items. 

As a result of the work we have done with our suppliers, you will start to see improved stock levels of products on shelf over the coming weeks.

There is no current limits on products. 

We are grateful to our team members and suppliers who are working tirelessly to do the best job possible under the circumstances, and we thank you for your understanding and support. Please continue to respect and support our team members, particularly if a product isn’t available or the checkout queues are longer than normal.

Find the latest information on product restrictions here.

24 April 2020

Coles Lithgow cleared to trade

Coles worked with NSW Health to conduct contact tracing and any other team members identified as having had close contact have been instructed to self-isolate and seek medical treatment should they display any symptoms.

Coles’ standard cleaning procedures comply with the Federal Government’s COVID-19 Hygiene Practices For Supermarkets. As an added precaution, Coles has conducted an additional deep clean of the store.

NSW Health has confirmed the store can continue to trade and the risk of transmission for customers and team members is very low.

Click here for more information on the measures Coles is taking to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

If you would like more information on COVID-19 you can call the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

18 April 2020

Helping you shop safely during this time

Our top priority continues to be the safety and wellbeing of our team members and customers. We’ve made some changes to support social distancing and help you move quickly through the store, these include:

  • Limiting the number of customers that can be in store at any one time
  • Adding signs around the store to help you maintain a safe distance while shopping. The length of a trolley is a good guide
  • Floor stickers at the checkout to show you where to stand to help maintain a safe distance
  • Asking you to pack your own bags to minimise handling and close contact time
  • Card payment instead of cash where you can
  • Significantly increasing cleaning and sanitisation in our stores and on high contact surfaces, such as basket and trolley handles, checkout areas, self-service screens and pin pads

We request that customers wash or sanitise your hands before entering the store and remind you to avoid touching your face, or any products you are not intending to purchase. In addition, Government guidelines for supermarkets also recommend keeping a 1.5m distance where possible, particularly when queuing, as the most effective way to protect yourself and others.

We are pleased to say our stock levels in stores have improved significantly compared to last month, making essential food and groceries more available for our customers. We are incredibly proud of our team members for their ongoing hard work in serving our communities in these difficult times. We ask that you continue to treat them with kindness and patience when shopping in store.

Planning your shop

We recommend you create a shopping list before visiting a store and have alternatives on your list in case your usual choice is unavailable. Using the Coles App is a great way to build and store your list. We also ask that you do not visit a store if you are feeling unwell and ask a friend or family member to shop for you.

When you shop

We encourage you to shop alone whenever possible, and we ask all customers to wash or sanitise their hands before entering the store. We request that you follow the store navigation signs to complete your shop as efficiently as possible. We also request that you touch only what you’ll buy across the store.

At the checkout

We now have marked signs at our supermarket checkouts to help you queue and pack at a safe distance. We ask that you pack your own bags to minimise both handling and close contact time. We also ask that you scan your flybuys card yourself when paying, and we prefer card payments including tap & go when checking out.

18 April 2020

Trading hours update

During the Easter period, we temporarily extended our trading hours to help our supermarkets manage increased customer demand. At this stage, we will keep the extended trading hours of 7am–10pm* in place to help you shop when its most convenient for you.

The first hour of trade on weekdays will continue to be dedicated to Coles Community Hour so vulnerable members of our community and our emergency services and healthcare workers can do their shopping more easily^.

*where State laws allow. Please check your nearest store for details.

Coles community hour

Community Hour is held from Monday to Friday from 7am to 8am in all Coles supermarkets, for the following community members:

7AM – 8AM TUESDAYS & THURSDAYS for emergency services and healthcare workers who:

  • Can demonstrate they are registered with AHPRA;
  • Have a workplace ID; or
  • Are wearing their work uniform^.

7AM – 8AM MONDAYS, WEDNESDAYS & FRIDAYS for elderly customers, those in need of assistance, as well as carers, friends and neighbours who shop on behalf of vulnerable customers. They simply need to present a government-issued identification card when entering the store^ (carers, friends and neighbours simply need to present one of the following cards of the person they are shopping on behalf of):

  • Pensioner Concession Card
  • Companion Card
  • Commonwealth Seniors Health Card
  • Health Care Card
  • Seniors Card
  • Disability Card

^these arrangements will be reviewed as necessary.

Store managers will use sensible discretion and compassion to ensure vulnerable customers who require access are able to complete their shopping during Community Hour.

Once this hour is complete, all other customers will be invited through the doors to complete their grocery shop.

For elderly or vulnerable people in our community unable to access supermarkets, there are charities throughout the country available to assist. To locate a charity in your area, please visit www.foodbank.org.au or www.askizzy.org.au . Please note, Foodbank does not supply food and groceries direct to the general public, but provides food and grocery relief to 2,400 charity agencies across Australia.

Update on the coles refund and returns policy

From 13 March 2020, we have temporarily suspended our change-of-mind refund policy to discourage over-purchasing.

If you have already purchased additional items you no longer want, please consider donating them to community organisations like our long-standing partner, Foodbank, which will ensure they are directed to people in need. To confirm your local Foodbank is accepting donations, what they are accepting and their opening hours, visit www.foodbank.org.au.

No rain check

As we continue to see unprecedented demand in our stores, we will be temporarily suspending our in store ‘rain check’ policy to avoid any disappointment relating to product availability.

Thanks for your ongoing support and patience in these unprecedented times.

5 april 2020

Coles Glenmore Park cleared to trade

A team member at Coles’ Glenmore Park NSW supermarket is self-isolating after testing positive for COVID-19 yesterday. Coles worked with NSW Health to conduct contact tracing and any other team members identified as having had close contact have been instructed to self-isolate and seek medical treatment should they display any symptoms.

Coles’ standard cleaning procedures comply with the Federal Government’s COVID-19 Hygiene Practices For Supermarkets. As an added precaution, Coles has conducted an additional deep clean of the store overnight.

NSW Health has confirmed the store can continue to trade and the risk of transmission for customers and team members is very low.
Click here for more information on the measures Coles is taking to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

If you would like more information on COVID-19 you can call the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

Coles Penrith cleared to trade

A team member at Coles’ Penrith NSW supermarket is self-isolating after testing positive for COVID-19 yesterday. Coles worked with NSW Health to conduct contact tracing and any other team members identified as having had close contact have been instructed to self-isolate and seek medical treatment should they display any symptoms.

Coles’ standard cleaning procedures comply with the Federal Government’s COVID-19 Hygiene Practices For Supermarkets. As an added precaution, Coles has conducted an additional deep clean of the store overnight.

NSW Health has confirmed the store can continue to trade and the risk of transmission for customers and team members is very low.
Click here for more information on the measures Coles is taking to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

If you would like more information on COVID-19 you can call the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

Coles Dandenong Plaza cleared to trade

A team member at Coles’ Dandenong Plaza VIC supermarket is self-isolating after testing positive for COVID-19 yesterday.

Coles worked with the Victorian Department of Health to conduct contact tracing, which confirmed no other team members had close contact or required self-isolation. Coles’ standard cleaning procedures comply with the Federal Government’s Federal Government’s COVID-19 Hygiene Practices For Supermarkets. As an added precaution, Coles has conducted an additional deep clean of the store overnight.

The Victorian Department of Health has confirmed the store can continue to trade and the risk of transmission for customers and team members is very low.
Click here for more information on the measures Coles is taking to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

If you would like more information on COVID-19 you can call the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

1 april 2020

Coles Randwick cleared to trade

Two team members at Coles’ Randwick NSW supermarket are self-isolating after coming into close contact with a person who subsequently tested positive for COVID-19.

The NSW Health Department informed Coles today that an external contractor who had worked in the store between 20-24 March had subsequently returned a positive diagnosis.

Coles worked with NSW Health to conduct a full contact tracing and confirmed that the contractor had close contact with only two team members, and no customers.

The team members have been instructed to self-isolate and seek medical treatment should they display any symptoms.

Coles’ standard cleaning procedures comply with the Federal Government’s COVID-19 Hygiene Practices For Supermarkets. As an added precaution, Coles is conducting an additional deep clean of the store overnight.

NSW Health has confirmed the store can continue to trade and the risk of transmission for customers and team members is very low.

Click here for more information on the measures Coles is taking to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

If you would like more information on COVID-19 you can call the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

31 March 2020

Coles credit card, personal loans and insurance

To find out more about the impact of COVID-19 on your Coles credit card, personal loan or insurance policy including changes to our contact centres click here.

Plan your shop easier with the Coles App

Plan your shop easier with the Coles App

  • Search and locate your favourite products in store
  • Build your shopping list and share it with your family and friends
  • Shop on Coles Online to have your groceries delivered straight to your front door
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