Spark

The Spark Guide To Life, Episode Four: Groceries!

Tech at the Food Retail Lab, the impact of self checkout, grocery delivery services, and reducing food waste.

Tech at the Food Retail Lab, the impact of self checkout, grocery delivery services, and reducing food waste.

The future of getting food to the table (Adam Killick)
Listen to the full episode53:59

A fake grocery store helps us learn about the real thing

At the University of Guelph, there a laboratory made to look like a grocery store. Cameras watch the shoppers as they move down the aisles and special headsets track the movements of their eyes. The Food Retail Lab is run by Mike Von Massow, a food economist and professor at the University of Guelph. He explains some of the tech being used in grocery stores, and how we can expect that tech to affect us.

Why self checkout machines stick around, even if you hate them

Self checkout machines are sometimes a last resort for shoppers, but stores keep pushing them. Researchers Madeleine Clare Elish and Alexandra Mateescu tell us about their report, AI in Context: The Labor of Integrating New Technologies, and how self checkout machines affect grocery workers.

Why we don't get groceries delivered. And why we are starting to.

Time was, you'd drive to a sprawling grocery store and fill up your car with food for a few weeks. But in dense urban centres with few cars, grocery delivery is becoming more popular. Retail marketing expert Patricia Vekich Waldron explains what's at stake (steak?) when it comes to getting foodstuffs to your doorstep.

"Zero-waste" grocery stores are taking off

From Brooklyn, Sicily, Malaysia, South Africa, Vancouver and Toronto-- a growing number of supermarkets are selling food without packaging in an effort to curb the toll of plastic on the environment.

Journalist Emily Matchar sheds light on how a growing number of supermarkets are selling food without packaging in an effort to curb the toll of plastic on the environment.

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