Sainsbury looks to promote Fairtrade with the help of QR codes

The Fairtrade Fortnight event has begun in the United Kingdom. The event aims to promote awareness of Faritrade goods – those produced through humane means. Sainsbury, one of the world’s largest supermarket chains, has announced that it will be taking part in the event by adding QR codes to many of its products. The company hopes to inform consumers about how beneficial purchasing Fairtrade products is to farmers in the world’s most impoverished countries.

Sainsbury's QR Code
All of the Fairtrade branded products carried in Sainsbury’s stores throughout the UK will feature their own QR codes. When scanned with a smart phone, consumers will be taken to a mobile website where they will learn the various aspects of Fairtrade. The company notes that money generated from selling Fairtrade goods is making a profound difference for businesses and communities around the world. At present, all of Sainsbury’s lines of bananas, roast and ground coffee, plain cotton t-shirts, roses and tea are acquired through Fairtrade means.

In 2010, Sainsbury’s efforts to support Fairtrade brought in over $3 million in investments to the Fairtrade Foundation. This money has been used to improve the quality of life for workers living in impoverish countries. Sainsbury expects to see continued success in this endeavor and believes that this success will be enhanced through the use of QR codes and, in the future, other mobile technologies.

For more information on Fairtrade: http://www.fairtrade.org.uk/

British supermarket chain tests iPad-ready shopping carts.

Want a side of Apple with your supermarket runs?

Shopping Cart with iPAD interface

Shopping Cart with iPAD interface

British grocery store chain Sainsbury’s is testing out new shopping carts with solar-powered iPad docks and speakers (iPads not included).

The trial, first rolled out at a Sainsbury’s location in Kensington, West London, will allow customers to watch live sports and sports-related news after docking their tablets to holders affixed to their shopping trolleys, the Telegraph reports. A built-in battery with a self-charging solar panel keeps the tablets from running out of power, and a sensor on the front bumper will beep if an engrossed shopper gets close to crashing into another cart.

The carts have been developed by broadcaster Sky TV to shine a light on its Sky Go service, which serves up television on the go on Apple devices (an Android app is reportedly coming soon).

Sainsbury’s said in a statement that the shopping carts, which may be rolled out to other stores in Britain if successful, could convince more shoppers to patronize a store.

“We strive to make our customers’ lives simpler, which is why we’re looking at these new trolleys,” said Brett Hart, the supermarket chain’s shopping cart buyer.

Sainsbury’s to improve product availability with new supply chain systems.

Sainsbury’s is to transform the management of its supply chain to improve stock availability through a five-year deal with IBM.

IBM will introduce new systems to help Sainsbury’s and its 4,000 suppliers find smarter ways of managing the supply chain and support continued growth in the grocer’s business.

Sainsbury’s will use an electronic trading network provided by Wesupply, and IBM will manage the migration of the grocer’s suppliers onto the system.

The retailer has previously suffered from problems with product availability in stores, and last year merged its supply chain and retail director roles in a move that analysts said could ease these issues.

The solution will allow Sainsbury’s to monitor the status of orders across its entire network and manage the availability of products. The Wesupply service will allow information flows to be streamlined. The grocer will also benefit from improved visibility of supply chain performance which will allow it to heighten stock control.

As part of this migration, Sainsbury’s will be transitioning its electronic data interchange (EDI) service to EDI network provider Inovis. Hundreds of Sainsbury’s suppliers are already using Inovis’ network to exchange documents with their customers.

Asda usurps Sainsbury’s in online stakes

Asda has becomes the second-largest online grocer in the UK, according to press reports.

The Independent cites TNS data that shows Asda boosted its first-quarter online sales by more than 70% compared to the equivalent period last year.

The performance catapults Asda over its UK rival to become the second-largest online retailer after Tesco.

The news will be regarded a blow to Sainsbury’s, which has wrestled with a number of technical issues over its website in recent weeks, causing the temporary closure of the site.

Supermarkets launch price war over petrol

Supermarkets began a petrol price war yesterday, bringing relief for millions of motorists in response to a fall in oil prices. Asda announced a cut in the cost of unleaded and diesel by 3p a litre, a move that triggered Morrisons’ 4p a litre reduction for unleaded petrol and diesel.

Sainsbury’s followed suit with a two-week promotion offering a 5p per litre reduction for customers spending £50 or more in its stores, while Tesco said it was lowering prices by up to 4p a litre.

BP, the owner of 223 petrol stations across the UK, said it would reduce prices by an average of 1p per litre.

Edmund King, president of the AA, said the cuts showed the fuel “spike” had reached a plateau.”If the global oil price drops further we could see even bigger reductions,” he said.

The RAC said this week that the number of breakdowns caused by the siphoning of fuel from vehicles had more than doubled since the start of the year.

The global oil price has fallen 6% since it reached a mid-July peak of $147 per barrel and fell below $130 per barrel yesterday.

David Miles, Asda’s trading director, said: “We are seeing a more stable reduction in oil prices, allowing us to pass on the savings to customers.”

BP said if the global oil price continued to fall “obviously” prices would be reduced further. But the oil giant added that it did not control pricing at the majority of its branded petrol stations because 950 of its UK stations were run as franchises.

The cost of fuel for a car has soared over the past 12 months, with the average price of petrol rising by a quarter to 119.42p a litre. An outcry from motorists persuaded the government to shelve a planned 2p increase in fuel duty that was due in October

%d bloggers like this: