Supermarket chain Carrefour is going to open the first automated store at the Huidenmarkt in the vicinity of the Brussels large market, where customers can shop 24 hours a day. That writes De Tijd and is confirmed to Belga. The innovative concept comes at the latest by the beginning of 2019.
The new automated Carrefour will work as a kind of system with lockers. It is the intention that the customer selects his messages virtually via the application or on the spot via a screen. Then large automatic devices collect the products and put them in those lockers, after which the customer takes their messages.
“The devices have access to about 400 products. It’s about fresh products, but also frozen or dry food”, explains Carrefour spokesman Baptiste van Outryve.
Staff behind the scenes
“It is not the goal to reach a store where no staff work. That is indeed there, but that will be more behind the scenes to solve tasks such as baking bread, replenishing products or solving technical problems “, says van Outryve.
Market research showed that in a metropolitan context there is an opportunity for such stores, which occupy much less space. Because the store is open around the clock, it serves as “a breakdown”. Carrefour now sees it as a kind of experiment and after a while it will evaluate the concept and possibly adapt or expand it.