The New Safeway? Albertsons Pilots Remote-Controlled Delivery

Lisa Johnston
Editor-in-Chief, CGT
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Albertsons Companies is piloting a remote-controlled delivery cart in Northern California, joining the growing list of grocers exploring automated delivery options.  

Albertsons has teamed with automated logistics provider Tortoise for a zero-emission cart that can be controlled by a remote operator. Equipped with a camera and speaker, the Safeway cart travels at an average speed of 3mph and can hold up to 120 pounds of groceries in four lockable containers. It’s powered by an electric battery.

“Our team is obsessed with trying new and disruptive technologies that can bring more convenience for our customers,” said Chris Rupp, Albertsons EVP and chief customer and digital officer. “We are willing to quickly test, learn and implement winning innovations that ensure we are offering the easiest and most convenient shopping experience in the entire industry.”

Customers receive a text when Safeway arrives at their home so they can pick up their groceries. It’s currently being tested in select neighborhoods, escorted by a human associate.

Albertsons, which began testing modular fulfillment lockers last fall, operates stores across 34 states and the District of Columbia under such banners as Albertsons, Safeway, Vons, Jewel-Osco, Shaw's and Acme, among others.

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