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01/11/2022

ShopRite unveils pickup pods at New York store

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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shoprite pod
ShopRite is offering a new automated pickup option.

ShopRite is the first grocer on the East Coast to utilize a new automated pickup solution.

The nation’s largest supermarket cooperative is rolling out the new Bell and Howell QuickCollect Go Pod, which enables shoppers to retrieve their online ShopRite grocery orders from a temperature-controlled outdoor pickup pod for a fast and easy, contactless self-service pickup experience. QuickCollect Go Pod can hold ambient, refrigerated and frozen foods, and customers’ entire grocery orders are available for pickup in one solution.

This free-standing pod is now available at the ShopRite store in New Rochelle, N.Y. When items are ready, customers receive a text containing a QR code to scan on the console screen, which brings the order to the customer pickup portal, allowing them to access their pre-ordered groceries.

Robotic automation enables delivery and retrieval of online orders. The first totes start dispensing to the customer in under one minute. The solution is designed to keep orders safe and secure until the customer picks them up with their unique pickup code.

ShopRite has been experimenting with different technologies that automate the fulfillment of online orders. In September, ShopRite became the first supermarket chain on the East Coast to utilize Tortoise delivery robots. The remote-controlled, zero-emissions carts typically travel on sidewalks or the side of the road, and are tele-operated by trained remote drivers. The delivery cart can hold up to 150 pounds in four lockable containers that support ambient, chilled and frozen groceries.

ShopRite customers are alerted to the arrival of the order via a text message that can also be used to unlock the cart to unload groceries. The Tortoise delivery system is another contactless option for ShopRite customers, as ShopRite also offers online grocery delivery through a variety of last-mile providers.

ShopRite also recently began piloting the Kardex Remstar Shuttle XP Vertical Lift Module (VLM) storage solution at a location in Kingston, N.Y., in an effort to enhance the store’s online shopping service. The Kardex solution is an example of micro-fulfillment technology, which uses automated bots to retrieve grocery items from a compact storage center for streamlined picking. 

The Shuttle XP increases storage capability by five times while reducing order errors and customer wait times. The system also increases slot capacity for stores with limited online shopping space.

“The QuickCollect Go Pod will make it even easier for our shoppers at the New Rochelle store to pick up their online orders,” said Steve Savas, president, Shop-Rite Supermarkets Inc. (SRS), which operates ShopRite stores in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and the Hudson Valley and Capital Region in New York. “It’s self-checkout and pickup for online orders that’s done right outside the store.  We are excited to be the first grocer on the East Coast with this technology.”

“Retailers like ShopRite recognize that consumer convenience and fulfillment efficiency are critical to the next level of e-commerce. Our data shows that consumers enjoy the convenience of this new individual automated curbside pickup with our QuickCollect Go Pod,” said Larry Blue, president and CEO of Bell and Howell.

ShopRite is a registered trademark of Wakefern Food Corp., a retailer-owned cooperative based in Keasbey, N.J., and the largest supermarket cooperative in the U.S. Nearly 280 ShopRite supermarkets are located throughout New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Delaware and Maryland.