“Pineapple in Aisle 8!”

by john on September 7, 2004

We often talk in our investment club about how technology will be leveraged in the future. Obviously RFID is as much in the now than the future but I still enjoy thinking about how this technology could prove useful. While grocery shopping tonight I found an interesting possibility.

Have you ever noticed how people will leave goods that require refrigeration in the can aisle or some other un-cold place? I have no idea how much stores lose to this but I see it all the time. In fact tonight I found myself in the situation those people probably do – I had picked up some fresh 8oz pineapple cups that needed refrigeration only to find some 4oz size non-refrigerated ones in the canned fruit aisle that would work better as kids snacks. I needed to go back to the fruit section anyway so I returned the 8oz ones later but I know a lot of people just put them on the shelf.

Here’s what I would want if I ran a grocery store – you have a cheap RFID tag on that pineapple cup and you have monitoring software that knows when it has sat still for 5 minutes outside it’s “home zone” and when it does you send out an alert to the stockboy to restock it. But not to just any stockboy, no those stockboys are carrying RFID tagged PDAs and you alert the closest one.

Yeah, that’d be cool. Unless you were a stockboy of course.

{ 1 comment }

Joe Grossberg September 8, 2004 at 10:50 am

I’ve noticed, at my local Giant, there is a bin near the registers that seems to be for food that customers changed their minds about when they reached the checkout line (too expensive?).

Among the cans and boxes are frozen dinners and raw meat. Stupid. How hard would it be to put a single fridge/freezer next to the bin? They’d probably break even after a week.

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