Grocery stores in Canada need to invest in robust e-commerce capabilities to prevent a repeat of stock-outs and long delivery delays that disappointed large numbers of customers who opted for virtual shopping at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, according to a food industry expert at the FreightWaves Last Mile Logistics Summit.
Canadians are hungry to shop online for food and staples, but the grocery sector’s infrastructure significantly lags demand, said Gary Newbury, who spent 30 years reshaping distribution networks for Gordon Food Service in the U.K. and Canada.
“Retailers were underprepared. They didn’t understand what they needed to do and how to scale their proposition when the sheer volume of demand hit them,” he said in a virtual discussion.
Large supermarket chains spent a lot of time on data science and how to acquire customers, but they failed to realize the need for a fulfillment strategy to execute those …