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As Carrefour looks to improve the experience for shoppers of its hypermarkets on a global basis, we round up developments from country operations as they look to make its largest store relevant for today and in the long term.

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As the retailer looks to continue to build the success of its Act for Food initiative globally, it has announced, with Nestle, the use of Blockchain technology for a national brand, while in Belgium it has entered into a partnership with pork supplier, Westvers.

Carrefour, Nestlé to use Blockchain for Mousline

Carrefour and Nestlé have announced that from 15 April they are using Blockchain technology to enable shoppers the opportunity to access information on the latter’s Mousline instant mashed potato product. People can scan a product from a Carrefour store in France and then receive information on the supply chain and production of that item. The information includes the varieties of potato used, the dates and places of manufacture, reports on quality control and places and dates of storage before the product reaches the shelves.

Nestlé was a founding member of the IBM Food Trust platform from 2017, while Carrefour joined in October 2018. Carrefour and Nestlé, along with IBM, collaborated for six months on the technology before its launch. The three companies said that by working together they were able to benefit each other’s differing expertise to launch the system quickly and successfully.

Carrefour Belgium partners with Westvers

Separately, Carrefour Belgium has entered into a partnership with pork supplier Westvers, to improve the traceability and quality of its products. The collaboration will see Westvers use blockchain technology in its supply chain. As with the Nestlé example, shoppers can scan a QR code on product’s packaging to allow them to discover information about its journey from the farm to Carrefour’s shelves.

Separately, Carrefour and Westvers said the agreement would enable the further development of Carrefour Quality Lines, expand buying from small producers in Belgium and allow Carrefour to grow its range of organic and veggie products.

For subscribers wanting more insight on Blockchain technology and how it is being used, see our insight presentation.

As part of Carrefour’s corporate aim to adapt its model and organisation to be a leader in food transition for all, we look at initiatives and campaigns being launched by its operations across Europe.

Carrefour looks to limit consumption of plastic in Poland and Spain

Carrefour Poland is enabling shoppers at its Fordon Gallery store in Bydgoszcz to bring their own containers and bags to limit its use of plastic. Meanwhile the same initiative is being rolled out in Spain, under the #Reutiliza (#Reuse) name, following its launch at a Carrefour Market in Madrid. In the latter country, the initiative is available at 1,000 Carrefour Market stores.

Shoppers buying products like meat, cheese, cabbage, pickled cucumbers, fruit and vegetables can hand over transparent containers with lids, into which staff will put the items and add a label for scanning at the checkout. Separately it has said that by 2025 it is aiming to only use packaging that can be recycled or composted for its private label products.

Carrefour Romania to support farmers’ organic production

Carrefour Romania has launched a programme aimed at supporting sustainable agriculture in the country. The retailer said the five-year initiative would aim to help producers to approach organic certification bodies, support them in dealing with local authorities and help them accessing public financing.

Producers can either register their interest in being involved in the programme online or by visiting one of its hypermarkets. The support would be offered across three main areas:

  • to support farmers for implementing sustainable farming practices in their farms;
  • to build a coalition of stakeholders for the development of sustainable organic agriculture;
  • to engage media and influencers to promote the benefits of bio-farming in the country.

Carrefour to make deliveries with electric vehicles in Madrid

To cut its emissions from delivering online orders, Carrefour is set to use three-wheeled electric vehicles in Madrid. The retailer will use the vehicles, called Scoobic Light, which is 100% electric and uses solar panels for recharging. The Scoobic Light has been designated as a scooter, which means it can be parked in spaces for two-wheeled vehicles, making it highly practical for making deliveries in urban areas. The scooter can run for eight hours and carry 1,400 litres by volume.

Carrefour Italy joins ‘Too good to go’ initiative

Carrefour Italy has joined the ‘Too Good to Go’ initiative. The programme, which is run through an app used by more than eight million people across nine countries, sees food retailers and restaurants sell unsold food for a reduced price. The food is brought together by ‘Too good to go’ in Magic Boxes that sell for between €2 and €6. The app geolocates shoppers and searches for companies in their proximity that will be able to supply food ‘too good to be thrown away’.

Commenting on the step, Carrefour Italy said: “The proposal of practical solutions such as the Too Good To Go app makes it possible to accelerate the achievement of the objective of reducing food waste, a requirement that is not only social, but also environmental.”

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As Carrefour looks to evolve its hypermarket offer globally we round up the initiatives it is rolling out in China, France and Belgium to make the format more efficient and profitable.

Carrefour France opens first ‘Essentiel’ hypermarket

After setting out its plans to launch different trials for its hypermarkets, Carrefour France has opened its first low-cost-focused ‘Essentiel’ store in Avignon. The store puts a greater focus on price, shrunk its sales area, reduced the number of SKUs it carries, especially in non-food, by between 15% and 30%, and has cut back on the way it presents products to shoppers. This has seen the store use metal shelving to display products for many categories, except for organic, which Carrefour has retained in its more traditional look and feel.

Carrefour China announces Gome tie-up

Following a successful trial at 11 Carrefour hypermarkets across four cities in China, Carrefour has signed an agreement with electronics retailer Gome. Carrefour and Gome said the trial had led to ‘double-digit growth in like-for-like store sales’.

The tie-up will see the latter open 200 shop-in-shops in Carrefour’s hypermarkets by the end of July 2019. The retailers said Gome will take between 300 sq. m and 500 sq. m in Carrefour’s hypermarkets, where it will stock home appliances, smart devices and other consumer electronic products. Under the agreement, Carrefour will manage the product promotion and marketing of the ranges, while Gome will supply knowledge on appliances and consumer electronics, logistics and customer services.

Carrefour Belgium and Medi-Market enter into a partnership

Carrefour Belgium has signed a long-term agreement with Medi-Market that will see the latter provide health and wellness products in the former’s hypermarkets. Depending on the Carrefour store Medi-Market will flex what is added, but Carrefour’s ranges will be supplemented where demand for Medi-Market’s products is already high and Carrefour has available space.

Carrefour and Medi-Market said the roll out would occur in phases. In the initial plan shop-in-shops with health and wellness products will be opened, while later Medi-Market will aim to open pharmacies.

Carrefour France to expand number of 24-hour stores

Following the successful trial of a convenience store opened 24 hours a day, Carrefour is looking to extend the offer to more locations. The trial at a Carrefour City in the 7th arrondissement of Paris builds on the positive response to the service in Belgium and Italy, where it has already been made available.

Carrefour Proximity’s executive director, Alexandre de Palmas, has said the retailer ‘would like to eventually have 24-hour stores in Paris and major cities, and be recognised for this service’. To support this aim the retailer is aiming to open 220 convenience stores by 2022 to grow its presence closer to shoppers.

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