SpartanNash Invests in More AI Tools to Predict Shopper Demand

Food solutions company teams with Upshop to improve efficiencies, reduce waste
Lynn Petrak
Senior Editor
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SpartanNash D&W store
SpartanNash is using AI technologies, such as Upshop's inventory optimization tool, to make data-based merchandising decisions.

SpartanNash is taking a multi-step approach to curb food waste and streamline its operations. The Midwest food solutions company, which recently announced that it has saved a million pounds of food waste by working with app-based marketplace Flashfood, is also expanding its partnership with tech provider Upshop to optimize inventories.

Through this collaboration, SpartanNash is deploying Upshop’s Magic inventory and replenishment optimization application across more of its locations. The AI-powered solution consolidates ordering systems, maintains planogram integrity and assists with merchandising reset planning in the product department as well as the center store.

[Read more: “SpartanNash Names EVP, Chief Merchandising Officer”]

Through this technology, store associates can enhance merchandising effectiveness and concurrently reduce waste by right-sizing assortments. Upshop’s Magic software was designed for grocery operations and takes into account seasonal trends, promotional activity and real-time sales data to deliver actionable insights.

“At SpartanNash, we’re prioritizing technology to enhance our associate and store guest experience,” said Tom Swanson, EVP, corporate retail. “By leveraging advanced analytics to predict product demand, our associates can spend less time checking inventory and more time face-to-face helping serve our shoppers.” 

Added Upshop CEO Shamus Hines: “We’re confident this expanded solution will provide an exceptional shopping experience for store guests by ensuring shelves are always stocked with delicious, fresh options.”

SpartanNash is leveraging other grocery tech tools in its quest to best manage inventories for customer satisfaction, sustainability and operational benefits. Earlier this year, the company announced that was widening the use of the autonomous inventory robot, Tally, to 15 stores in Michigan and Indiana.

Grand Rapids, Mich.-based SpartanNash operates two complementary business segments – food wholesale and grocery retail. Its global supply chain network serves wholesale customers that include independent and chain grocers, national retail brands, e-commerce platforms, and U.S. military commissaries and exchanges. On the retail side, SpartanNash operates 144 brick-and-mortar grocery stores, primarily under the banners of Family Fare, Martin's Super Markets and D&W Fresh Market, in addition to dozens of pharmacies and fuel centers. The company is No. 41 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2023 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

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