Progressive Grocer

MAR 2017

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L ess than a decade from now, food shopping will be an intuitive pro- cess seamlessly incorporated into daily activities. at's according to a new study, "Surviving the Brave New World of Food Retail- ing: A Roadmap to Relevance for the Future for Food Retailers," conducted by Kurt Salmon for the Coca-Cola Retailing Research Council (CCRRC), which offers a vision of grocery retail- ing in the year 2025. It's a date that sounds futur- istic, yet it's just eight years away. And parts of the picture the study paints are already reality today. "Food shopping will not be a discrete journey," the study asserts. "It will be disintermediated into myriad touchpoints and events where consumers will have an almost limitless choice in where, when, how and why they fulfill their wants and needs for food." e shopping journey, the study continues, "will begin more fluidly from lifestyle triggers, including integrated monitoring and management of health and wellness, diet and fitness, and ordering will become increasingly seamless." Further, consumers will engage with retailers in a highly personalized fashion, receive recipe inspiration from multiple channels, and acquire groceries from several flexible and immediate delivery options. Sound scary? "e sky isn't falling — the status quo is disappearing," explains Michael Sansolo, a member of the research council, who led a panel discussion on the future of food retailing at Food Marketing Institute's Midwinter Executive Conference in January. e panel of retailers dis- cussed how grocers must adapt to ongoing global societal shifts that are changing the way people produce, sell, prepare and consume food. Grocers need "to be progressive in adapting to these changes," Sansolo told me follow- ing the panel discussion. "A lot of the traditional strengths of the food network are disappearing," such as location and brands, he said, because of changing consumers and technology. "We know the 'what' of the consumer. We need to know the 'how' and the 'why,' so we're fulfilling needs, not just products," Sansolo added. e extensive Salmon/CCRRC study poses a scenario for grocery shopping in 2025, relat- ing the retail journey of a fictional family. In some ways, their future is already here. "Jessica does her shopping for nonperishables between work meetings on her computer, her iPad or by speaking instructions into her mobile phone while driving carpool in the car. Jessica very rarely visits a brick-and-mortar store. She is enrolled in a subscription service for a number of consum- ables. ... is cloud-based service leverages a basic replenishment algorithm to maintain Jessica's perpetual inventory and order parameters … "Dave uses a combination of online purveyors and specialty brick-and-mortar establishments to purchase perishable foods. … He has 'tagged' these items in his 'smart' fridge, a networked device that identifies items that are running low and uploads a replenishment order to a 'shopping list mediator' service. … On Saturday morning, Dave likes to go in person to the multicategory, specialty brick-and-mortar store to personally select fresh produce and unique ingredients. He likes to browse, watch cooking demos and taste- test new products. … When Dave arrives, he pulls out his mobile phone. … e loyalty soft- ware engine continuously updates and enhances Dave's product and delivery preferences by moni- toring his shopping behavior. … Dave is able to walk through the store, scanning and bagging the items he is purchasing. … For one item, Dave finds it 20 percent cheaper on Amazon. With the click of a button, he uploads the Amazon price to the app and the price is automatically lowered to the competing price. ... Dave begins to prepare Saturday evening's meal and he realizes that he does not have enough panko bread crumbs. Dave quickly places an Instacart order to get the bread crumbs from his favorite mass retailer, then, on impulse, adds some homemade guacamole and chips from his favorite ethnic food store. e order arrives 90 minutes later by Uber's new driverless vehicle service." e study cautions: "Keep in mind that every company is at a different point in this journey and everyone is moving at a different speed. But everyone must be on this journey or risk becoming irrelevant with the shoppers of tomorrow." See the complete study at PG Closer Than You Think Everyone must be on this journey or risk becoming irrelevant with the shoppers of tomorrow. Jim Dudlicek Editor-in-Chief [email protected] Twitter @jimdudlicek 12 | Progressive Grocer | Ahead of What's Next | March 2017 Note By Jim Dudlicek

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