Your Co-op Food store

Source: Midcounties Co-op

The society initially partnered with Retail Insight in 2019

Midcounties Co-op is expanding its partnership with markdown technology provider Retail Insight to ramp its efforts to slash food waste.

The cognitive-driven technology, named WasteInsight, focuses on expiration management, more efficient donations to charities, and forecasting accuracy in a bid to enable dynamic markdowns in terms of pricing and timing.

Its aim is to maximise sell-through while minimising losses from food waste.

Midcounties Co-op, which originally rolled out the solution in 2019, is now set to deploy a new feature within the WasteInsight solution called Prompted Markdown.

Using AI, Prompted Markdown automatically identifies products nearing expiry, then alerts staff members when action is needed.

This helped to “eliminate the need for time-consuming manual checks, improving in-store teams’ productivity and freeing them to serve customers”, Retail Insight said.

“As a co-operative, sustainability is at the heart of what we do,” said Midcounties Co-op head of supply chain Jordon Clement. “Working with Retail Insight, we’re excited to be innovative around waste reduction by exploring new opportunities in technology.

“We believe this development will not only help us reduce the amount of food going to landfill, but will also give our colleagues more time to do the things they would rather be doing: spending time engaging with and serving our customers and members.”

Retail Insight client manager Jessica Westwell added: “We are delighted to be partnering with Your Co-op on our Prompted Markdown solution to improve expiration date management processes and to gain labour efficiencies and process compliance.

“This is an exciting new stage for them and continues to build on the benefits already seen from our dynamic markdown solution.”

Midcounties Co-op runs more than 230 food stores across the West Midlands, Oxfordshire, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire. Fellow Co-op societies Scotmid and Southern Co-op also use the WasteInsight solution.