Zomato has announced it will start delivering alcohol in Odisha from today. The service called 'Zomato Wine Shops' is available on the home page of the Zomato app and allows users to select any product from the listed retailers (just like grocery stores) and gets it delivered to their home within 60 minutes. Zomato will play the role of the aggregator, as it does for other services like food delivery, etc. Users can avail the service from 9 am to 6 pm as permitted by the state authorities. The app will only feature licensed retailers, who have applied for the service.
Starting with Bhubaneswar, Zomato will soon expand to other cities like Rourkela, Balasore, Balangir, Sambalpur, Berhampur and Cuttack. Odisha is the second state where Zomato has started this service. The first state was Jharkhand where Zomato had launched the service on May 21.
Zomato has built in several processes and checks to ensure safe delivery. At the time of ordering and delivering, age checks of consumers will be mandatory. Users will be required to upload a valid ID proof to be eligible for ordering which would later be verified by the delivery partner at the time of handing over the order. There would also be product category limits to promote responsible ordering. The firm is also providing training of safety norms and responsible behaviour to all its active delivery partners for delivering alcohol.
"Our users in Odisha can now use Zomato to get alcohol delivered in addition to grocery and food delivery. We are working very closely with excise departments to ensure end-to-end compliance to the safety guidelines and are also introducing consumption and identity verification protocols to promote responsible ordering and consumption," said Rakesh Ranjan, Vice President at Zomato. To stop crowding at the booze shops, certain State governments such as that of Odisha are now allowing home delivery of alcohol, both Indian made foreign liquor (IMFL) and beer. The charges will be higher than the maximum retail price as the state government is levying a 'special Covid fee' on liquor sale. Licensed alcohol retailers and food aggregators both can take up the home delivery of liquor.