Coop Italia: innovating to aid transparency

Date : 12 February 2020

Lucy Bellotti

Retail Analyst

Coop Italia is trialing new technology for product transparency.

Collaborating to drive pace of innovation

Coop Italia is partnering with tech start-ups to increase the pace and scope of its innovation. Most notably, this has been through its ‘supermarket of the future’ store. This offers an inventive shopping experience with interactive tables and real-time data screens providing product information, which personalizes the customers’ visit. This can be read in more detail here.

Virtual assistant helps improve the shopper’s experience

In 2019, Coop has introduced ShoppY (read about it here), a virtual shopping assistant with machine-learning algorithms to learn on its own, from shopping receipts, to give customers a helpful service.

Blockchain technology provides greater transparency

Through its partnership with IBM, Coop Italia is exploring the use of blockchain to trace the supply chain of products, starting with eggs under the private label brand Coop Vivi Verde.

The partnership enables Coop to implement ‘Hyperledger Fabric’ technology: scanning the QR code on packaging to follow eggs from farm to store.

Transparency

The new technology allows the company to offer full transparency of the eggs. Customers can identify the egg’s origin, the hen’s incubator and cage, animal welfare, and whether antibiotics were used. The technology gives the customer insight into the 2m hens and more than 200m eggs produced in a single year.

Stefania Asti, consumer industry leader at IBM Italy, says: “The egg chain developed with Coop Italia is a great example of how blockchain can better inform consumers about the food they choose, buy and eat, and demonstrate transparency along the whole chain.”

Customer’s satisfied with blockchain technology

Coop Italia asked 1,000 customers who tested the new technology their thoughts which resulted in high levels of satisfaction and interest. 83% of customers said it would motivate them to buy the product again.