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OPINIONRetailers

Ghost Kitchens Are a Thing

But what will ghost supermarkets look like?

The Lempert Report

During Wendy's 2019 Investor Day, Chief Development Officer Abigail Pringle announced that dark kitchens, also called ghost or cloud kitchens, would become a significant part of the fast-food chain's expansion strategy, Business Insider reported.  

Topline is building a commercial kitchen in a less expensive area that is designed just to deliver foodservice offerings directly to consumers. Through the lower overhead and rent, the use of more technology and robotics and lower labor costs—sorry, waiters, busboys and maitre d's—the restaurant can inch out better profits.

Now, for supermarkets the model will be different, but as we have said many times before, the traditional 42,000-square-foot store front is antiquated and needs rethinking. Shoppers want to build a food relationship with service departments in the store. Those unemotional cans, bottles and boxes? Let's get rid of them. Let's divide the store in half and create a ghost supermarket that is a fully automated warehouse and picking location that a shopper can use to order their staples before they get to the store, then shop for the more exciting fresh foods, and on the way out of the store, stop by the pickup area for those ghost supermarket products.

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