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While companies like Walmart, Kroger and Target are racing to deliver groceries right to customers’ doorsteps, consumers are still incredibly wary about buying online. Currently only 3 percent of grocery spending occurs online. Meanwhile, only a quarter of consumers have even tried an online grocery service within the last year, according to a survey by consulting group Bain & Co. in collaboration with Google. Out of the 8,000 surveyed, only 26 percent reported that they order groceries online more than once a month. According to the survey, only 42 percent of those who used a grocery delivery service for the first time said it actually saves them time. A bad experience could potentially ruin a shopper’s perception of the concept. The survey found that at least 75 percent of online grocery shoppers continue to use the first retailer they initially shopped from. Online grocery shopping is only expected to explode within the coming years, though. Even if the grocers haven’t yet captured the trust of the consumer, they are still continuing to move toward delivery as it is more profitable overall.


In the first half of 2019, Maersk will release a revamped Remote Container Management (RCM) design, with new product features enhanced by a virtual assistant named Captain Peter. “Our goal is for the RCM product to look and feel like your favorite smartphone app. There is still a lot of paper work and difficult processes in global trade. Captain Peter will help take care of some of this complexity, by seamlessly engaging with the customer from end to end in the supply chain,” explains Anne-Sophie Zerlang Karlsen, head of global reefer management at Maersk. To start, Captain Peter will follow simple rules and send up-to-date information via customers’ preferred channel. Should any deviations be observed, or the shipment be delayed, Captain Peter will notify the customer. The RCM technology makes a reefer’s location, temperature, humidity and power status easily available to the customer. Should any issues be detected, the customer can alert its supplier or have the shipment checked by local surveyors, potentially saving the customer millions of dollars in lost cargo. “With the number of active users of the RCM platform constantly growing, the aspiration is for Captain Peter to gather enough information to be able to predict potential cargo damage and provide configuration suggestions before containers are shipped,” concludes Karlsen.



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Phononic, a leader in cooling and heating technology, has teamed up with Pepsi Bottling Ventures (PBV) to expand current deployment of the company’s Merchandising Refrigerator to PBV customers. The refrigerators offer food retailers an innovative and sustainable alternative to compressor-based refrigeration. The refrigerators also store more inventory, driving sales higher and with lower replenishment trips, while delivering an unsurpassed sustainability footprint. “Phononic’s sustainable solid-state cooling technology is groundbreaking and furthers our goal of improving environmental sustainability throughout our entire organization and within the communities in which we operate,” says Randy Quirk, vice president of Foodservice at PBV. “The Phononic Merchandising Refrigerator has been an incredible asset for our retail store customers. Each sustainable unit delivers compact and energy efficient utilization of merchandising floor space, uniform temperatures and maintenance savings. Based on these features, our customers now have the freedom to rethink in-store layout and optimize refrigerator placement, creating incremental revenue opportunities.” A recent survey commissioned by Phononic found that 50 percent of food retail executives claimed that they hadn’t figured out a way to leverage technology as successfully as nonfood retailers. Meanwhile, 60 percent of respondents said they feel their organization doesn’t invest enough in in-store technology. Technological differentiation is critical for food retailers, and the company aims to reimagine the shopping experience by allowing for optimal in-store placement.

3/6/19 12:00 PM

Profile for Supply+Demand Chain/Food Logistics

Food Logistics March 2019  

Food Logistics is the only publication exclusively dedicated to covering the movement of product through the global food and beverage supply...

Food Logistics March 2019  

Food Logistics is the only publication exclusively dedicated to covering the movement of product through the global food and beverage supply...