Shop and Drop Delivery Services are Growing

Now groceries can be delivered by drones.

Sep 14, 2022
Shop and Drop Delivery Services are Growing | Now groceries can be delivered by drones.

Buying groceries online has been around for a long time. Deliveries are usually scheduled for the next day but it doesn’t have to take that long. Now, supermarket deliveries are getting a lot faster.

That’s because drones are replacing drivers and this can speed up deliveries. One pilot program is even pledging to deliver your groceries just mere minutes after ordering, reported ABC News. So if you have a hankering for ice cream or you have unexpected guests, just place an order and it will be flown directly to your home.

Pilot program in Australia
A pilot program was recently launched in Canberra from the Australian  supermarket chain Coles to deliver groceries by drone. Coles  partnered with Wing (from Alphabet), according to a press release from the store.

The drone delivery service offers a select group of items including fresh produce, snacks, beverages, convenience food, health care items, and even toilet paper. Just order by using the Wing app and your order will soon be flying its way to your home from a special hub that is stocked with the items.

“We are passionate about finding innovative ways to help our customers to shop with us and we aim to deliver anytime, anywhere, anyhow shopping,” Ben Hassing, Cole’s chief executive of eCommerce, said in the press release.

The drones can only fly within 10 kilometers from the hub and they do not operate at night, reported ABC News. Wing’s drones can carry up to 1.5 kg at a time so this will not replace delivery vans that can carry larger loads.

Walmart’s reaching new heights in the US
Walmart has been working on drone delivery service for over a year, according to Supermarket News. The mega big box chain ran a small pilot program Virginia Beach, Virginia in 2020 that showed that deliveries could be made in two hours.

In November 2021, Walmart introduced its first commercial DroneUp delivery for customers in Northern Arkansas beginning with a neighborhood market in Farmington. It was so successful that Walmart plans on rolling out the drone delivery service to six states by the end of 2022.

Customers will be able to order thousands of items that will be airborne in 30 minutes, according to a company blog. The orders can weigh up to 10 lbs (4.5 kg) and include staples like Tylenol, diapers, and even Hamburger Helper.

After completing hundreds of deliveries within a matter of months across our existing DroneUp hubs, we’ve seen firsthand how drones can offer customers a practical solution for getting certain items fast,” Walmart U.S. CEO John Furner said in the blog.

“More importantly, we’ve seen a positive response from our customers that have used the service. In fact, while we initially thought customers would use the service for emergency items, we’re finding they use it for its sheer convenience, like a quick fix for a weeknight meal.” 

Israel’s cleared for takeoff
Now, one of Israel’s largest supermarket chains will begin to deliver groceries by drone on September 18, 2022 in a five-day pilot program in Modi’in, central Israel, reported NoCamels. Rami Levy will be working with the startup drone company Cando.

The company expects to make 60 flights a day during the trial. In the beginning, the first customers will be Rami Levi employees and the drones will only carry a maximum of 2.5 kg but they are actually able to carry much more.

“In 10 years’ time we’ll be using autonomous taxis to transport people. To be at that point in 10 years, we have to start building the infrastructure now. There are so many players in this ecosystem, we have to cooperate and build it together,” Julia Katz, the vice president for Strategy and Infrastructure of Cando, told NoCamels.

So the next time you see something in the sky, it could be a bird, a plane, or a supermarket delivery drone. After all, the skies are the limit when it comes to improving on conventional fossil fueled delivery vehicles.

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Bonnie has dedicated her life to promoting social justice. She loves to write about empowering women, helping children, educational innovations, and advocating for the environment & sustainability.