Source: P&V

High-end deli chain Prezzemolo & Vitale has rolled out electronic shelf labels to all its UK stores.

The third-generation family-owned premium deli is using the ESLs to update pricing and promotions in real-time, and reaping labour hours savings, it said. Store staff “can focus time on serving customers or tasks that improve customer experiences in-store” rather than updating paper labels.

Founded in Palermo, Sicily, and having expended its estate to 10 stores in the city, P&V launched in the UK market in 2017 with a store on King’s Road, Chelsea. It has since opened three delicatessens in wealthy London boroughs, including Notting Hill and Wimbledon, as well as at Borough Market.

The chain was already using ESLs within its Palermo store network and wanted to bring them to its UK stores as well. It partnered with Pricer on the rollout.

The technology “would not only keep the look and feel of its stores sleek and modern, but also help P&V deliver real-time automated pricing updates across its 2,500 SKUs in-store and improved replenishment and restocking efficiencies, freeing up its staff to focus on customer service delivery”, Pricer said.

P&V opted for Pricer’s four-colour ESLs, which “matched both the premium aesthetics of the P&V stores, while also delivering the digital capabilities P&V wanted to build into its store operations” Pricer said.

“As the saying goes, ‘retail is detail’ and Pricer is helping us to ensure our pricing and store operations can run effectively with the attention to detail and customer service we want to be able to offer to our customers,” said Salvatore Prezzemolo, chief operating officer at P&V.

The deli chain – which imports produce from Italy, as well as offering dine-in experiences at in-store cafés – plans to open a further two stores in Kensington and Clapham Junction later this year, where ESLs are expected to feature from launch.

“The P&V brand celebrates the very best of Italian and Sicilian culture through the highest-quality produce, delivered in its sleek and modern delis,” said Peter Ward, UK & Ireland country manager at Pricer. “The digital shelf-edge capabilities have helped drive improved store operational efficiencies meaning it can go even further in delivering high-touch, premium shopping experiences to its discerning customer base.”

ESLs made their debut in grocery more than 30 years ago, but despite widespread use across Europe – particularly in France and Scandinavia – are yet to truly make their mark in the UK.

Several supermarkets have trialled but ultimately dropped the technology. Asda late last year called time on a trial of ESLs at its Stevenage superstore, which was the biggest trial in the UK upon launch in 2020, involving more than 25,000 devices.

However, adoption of the tech locally is on the increase. In 2022, Scotmid Co-op completed a rollout of more than half a million electronic shelf labels across its 189 food stores. Southern Co-op in August last year completed its rollout of over half a million ESLs across its 197-strong store estate.

Last week Lidl announced it was replacing paper pricing tags with ESLs across its entire UK estate. It follows a trial in over 35 stores, including in Epsom and Tooting, which The Grocer exclusively revealed last year.

Lidl said the rollout would save over 206 tonnes of carbon annually through paper and packaging reductions, as well as giving staff more time to help shoppers instead of manually changing tags. The discounter is the second major UK supermarket to roll out ESLs to all stores after Aldi, which did so last year.