During the coronavirus pandemic, online grocery shopping and delivery has become an increasingly popular option. As the way people shop for food and other essentials changes, Amazon is opening its first-ever Amazon Fresh grocery store.
Amazon Prime users are already going to be familiar with ordering from Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods using the website and app. And Amazon first launched small-scale Amazon Go shops in select markets back in 2018. Now, Amazon is diving into a full-on supermarket with the opening of its Amazon Fresh grocery store in Woodland Hills, California, a neighborhood in Los Angeles.
The new store will offer all of the classics you’ll see at any large-scale grocery store and its own brands of food, as well as local brands, regional foods and 365 by Whole Foods Market products.
“Our culinary team offers a range of delicious prepared foods made in-store every day—from fresh-baked bread and made-to-order pizzas, to rotisserie chickens and hot sandwiches,” Amazon said in a blog post. “Customers can shop a wide assortment of conventional produce, meat, and seafood, and we proudly offer 365 by Whole Foods Market organics. Plus, Amazon Fresh offers national brands like Coca-Cola and Kraft Mac and Cheese, local brands like Rockenwagner Bakery and Groundworks Coffee, regional favorites not typically found in LA like Dukes Mayo and Ellenos Yogurt, and new Amazon exclusive brands like Fresh and Cursive.”
The store also will include other Amazon technologies, including an Alexa kiosk for customer assistance and shopping that syncs with your Alexa shopping list through the Amazon app.
The big new technology in the store is the smart shopping cart, known as the Amazon Dash Cart. This cart uses computer vision algorithms and sensor fusion to identify what is in your cart. You then exit through a special Amazon Dash Cart Lane, and your payment is processed through the credit card connected to your Amazon account.
A screen on the cart will also show you your Alexa Shopping List and grocery subtotal. Though the Dash Cart Lanes are automatic, traditional checkout lanes are also available at the store.
For now, the Woodland Hills Amazon Fresh grocery store is only open to select customers in the area who will be invited to shop via email. The store will open to the general public in the coming weeks. And by the way it sounds, if all runs smoothly, this new Amazon Fresh store could become one of the best grocery stores in America.