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Associated Wholesale Grocers Adopts Instacart’s Smart Carts

The tech company’s services, including same-day delivery and AI-powered Caper Carts, will roll out to an additional 2,300 AWG member stores.
caper cart

Associated Wholesale Grocers (AWG), a national cooperative food wholesaler to independently owned supermarkets, has expanded its partnership with Instacart to offer additional solutions, including same-day delivery and Instacart's AI-powered Caper Carts, at AWG member retailers. 

More than 800 of AWG’s 3,500-some member retailer locations currently use Instacart. This extended partnership was forged to simplify access for an additional 2,300 locations to join Instacart's technology suite.

Instacart and AWG are working closely together to help retailers set up an online shopping and delivery service to meet their customers' needs, according to a media release from Instacart. Once the grocer is live on the Instacart App, customers can visit the Instacart website or mobile app, enter their city, select their store and start adding items to their grocery cart. An Instacart courier will pick and deliver the order within the customer's chosen time frame — whether on the same day or scheduled up to two weeks in advance.

In addition to offering same-day delivery, Instacart also equips retailers with in-store technology solutions like Caper Carts, which use computer vision and AI to automatically identify items as they are placed in the cart. 

AWG members will deploy Instacart’s smart carts — which use computer vision and AI to automatically identify items as they are placed in the cart — to transform the traditional checkout experience in place. This will allow shoppers to bag items as they shop and make payments from anywhere in the store. Customers will also be able to link their loyalty account to the carts and access personalized promotions and savings as they shop.

At the start of 2024, Instacart expanded its advertising solutions to Caper Carts and began piloting ads on the screens that serve personalized recommendations and experiences to help them discover new brands and products as they browse the physical aisles of a grocery store.

Caper Carts are part of Instacart's Connected Stores, which are a bundle of Instacart Platform technologies introduced in 2022 and designed to help grocers bridge the online and in-store shopping experience.

"Our joint effort with AWG is more than a partnership; it's a dedicated effort to empower independently owned grocers to navigate the digital landscape," Nick Nickitas, general manager, local independent grocery at Instacart and founder of Rosie, Instacart’s turn-key grocery e-commerce platform for independent grocers, said in the release. 

[Also Read: Instacart Expands Tech to Support Independent Grocers]

"We've witnessed the tremendous value Instacart brings to many of our local independent grocers, making innovation, growth and deeper customer engagement possible,” Shelly Moore, chief information officer of AWG, added. “That's why we're partnering to streamline access to the technology and service our retail partners need to grow via a proven e-commerce offering."

"As an AWG member retailer, we've been incredibly proud to expand our online business through the Instacart platform," Tim Cosens at McKeever's Price Chopper, said. "As we look ahead to the next chapter, we view Instacart as an integral technology partner and look forward to implementing even more of their omnichannel solutions, like their AI-driven smart shopping carts."

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