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From the CEO
As the saying goes, necessity is the mother of invention. Some of those inventions – and the insights that generate them – are truly unmissable. That’s what this F&B Digest is all about.
The pandemic has certainly helped to speed up developments in F&B retail technology. The sector has faced the challenge of making stores safer and maintaining footfall, while coping with skyrocketing demand for home delivery and adapting to entirely new demands in ever-shifting local contexts.
This means that retailers have been experimenting with ways to help shoppers minimize contact and carry out shopping trips more conveniently and efficiently. They’ve also turned to technology to scale-up and increase accessibility to last-mile grocery delivery and much broader supply chain moves. Some of the innovations are truly exciting, like robots that can fetch all the items on your shopping list in seconds, AI that helpfully suggests products you might like to try, new business models that offer values and personalisation that appeal to new groups of buyers in entirely new ways, or driverless delivery vehicles that can be dispatched to your home.
In this edition of the F&B Digest, we wanted to take a look at the most interesting developments in food retail technology and gauge real consumer reaction. What we found is that younger Americans especially are likely to adopt any technology that makes getting their groceries quicker and easier – even at a reasonable cost.
We also wanted to bring real producers into the equation (that’s where grocery products actually come from, so it can’t all be about demand and supply chain, we need to cover real supply too!). So, alongside data from 2,000 consumers, you’ll also find an interview with the insights director from Organic Valley, detailing how the farmers cooperative approaches new product development. And, we ask the CRO of beverage brand DRY how they turned their website into a growth engine by pivoting to direct-to-consumer (D2C) sales. Bon appetit!