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04/09/2021

Kimberton Whole Foods Fights Food Waste With Shelf Engine AI

Philly-area independent grocer boosts sales via automated ordering
Bridget Goldschmidt
Managing Editor
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Kimberton Whole Foods Fights Food Waste With Shelf Engine AI
Using Shelf Engine’s predictive tech and automated ordering solution, Kimberton Whole Foods lifted sales across the products managed by Shelf Engine, versus the store as a whole, while also reducing shrink.

Kimberton Whole Foods, an independent, family-owned community market in the greater Philadelphia area, has teamed with Shelf Engine to lower in-store fresh food waste. Using Shelf Engine’s predictive technology and automated ordering solution, Kimberton Whole Foods has lifted sales across the products managed by Shelf Engine, versus the store, as a whole by an average of 42%, and up to 70% at its best-performing store, while also reducing shrink. The partnership encompasses all Kimberton Whole Foods locations, with plans to expand into more products and categories.

Kimberton Whole Foods has always strived to reduce its environmental footprint, but now with Shelf Engine, the company believes that it has found a way to help both the planet and its bottom line.

“Not only has Shelf Engine had an incredible impact on our sales, but these benefits have extended far beyond our shelves,” explained Robin Brett, director of purchasing at the independent grocer. “With less time spent on forecasting and inventory planning, we’re able to spend more time focused on what matters most: our customers. By working with Shelf Engine, and letting them take care of the inventory management and ordering, we can put more focus on providing our customers with the best shopping experience possible.”

Shelf Engine uses artificial intelligence and cognitive automation technology to reduce out-of-stocks. Beyond enhancing the customer experience, Shelf Engine provides reduced risk and guaranteed upside by buying back any products that don’t sell. As the industry faces rising pressure from evolving shopper demand and growing competition, bolstering customer loyalty and lowering food waste have become crucial to the success of retail grocery.

“Kimberton Whole Foods championed its sustainable philosophy before these ideas were mainstream, and has remained a pioneer for innovative, forward-thinking business models,” said Stefan Kalb, co-founder and CEO of Seattle-based Shelf Engine. “Tapping Shelf Engine's technology has enabled the company to increase sales and profits while strengthening its commitment to giving back — a win-win.”

Kimberton Whole Foods is a multigenerational family business with locations in Collegeville, Douglassville, Downingtown, Kimberton, Malvern and Ottsville, Pennsylvania.

Last July, Shelf Engine raised $12 million in a Series A funding round, and just last month raised $41 million in a Series B funding round. Its software is also used by Cincinnati-based Kroger, No. 3 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2020 list of the top food and consumables retailers in the United States.

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