To keep up with the deep backlog of online requests, Tops employees will help Instacart workers shop customers' orders.
Typically, permanent Instacart workers are employed directly by Instacart to work on-site at stores such as Tops and Wegmans. Those workers shop grocery orders for customers who order purchases for curbside pickup.
With coronavirus stay-at-home measures in place, Instacart pickup and delivery windows have been booked solid for weeks.
In recent weeks, Instacart has experienced the highest demand of its eight-year history, it said. Order volumes increased by 300% last week compared to the same week last year, Tops said.
Tops Markets piloted the employee-assisted format at one store Thursday and will continue adding more stores. Before that, Tops allowed Instacart shoppers to shop in Tops stores longer hours than usual, in order to fulfill more orders.
Instacart has also expanded its delivery windows in the app to look ahead 14 days instead of seven.
Wegmans workers began packing Instacart orders earlier this month.