Instagram has launched a new feature to help local food businesses around the UK to continue functioning during the coronavirus pandemic.

The social media app, which allows users to post photos and videos, has revealed that an ‘Action button’ could be added to a company’s account.

For restaurants, a ‘Food Order sticker’ could appear on the establishment’s Instagram stories, allowing users to click on it and make a purchase. The button or sticker will take the customer through to the business’s website where they will be able to make an order.

The purpose behind this new development is to encourage residents to support their local businesses and order food from independent restaurants to help keep them afloat.

Since Covid-19 swept our shores a few months ago, Bournemouth, Christchurch, Poole and every town and city across the country has had to adapt to a ‘new normal’.

To prevent the spread of the virus the Government announced on March 23 that the country would go into lockdown, insisting that everyone stay at home and only leave for essential travel. For example, going to a supermarket for groceries or picking up a prescription from a pharmacy.

Initially, the public were only allowed to leave their homes once a day for outdoor exercise, but since then, restrictions have eased slightly. However, many non-essential businesses remain closed, which puts plenty of doubt on the future of their employees and the companies themselves.

Instagram’s new feature is designed to help local food outlets attract the attention of customers, making them aware that they are still open for business in some capacity.

Some local eateries in Bournemouth and surrounding areas continue to operate, but for takeaway orders only. Due to the social distancing measures in place, many kitchens are unable to have all their culinary staff back working as it’s not possible to stay 2 metres apart from their colleagues.

As a result, restaurants have been operating with a limited menu, but still creating delicious dishes for local residents. With widespread efforts being made to slow the spread of the virus, there is hope that restaurants and other food services will be able to reopen in a few months’ time, but for now, every little bit is being done to support local businesses.