Amazon adding groceries in Canada

Amazon is getting into the supermarket business in Canada. To no one’s surprise the company this morning said that it will begin to sell groceries in this country as part of a giant category expansion. In addition to groceries, Amazon.ca is adding auto parts, as well as some 12 other product categories. Amazon will now […]

Amazon is getting into the supermarket business in Canada. To no one’s surprise the company this morning said that it will begin to sell groceries in this country as part of a giant category expansion.

In addition to groceries, Amazon.ca is adding auto parts, as well as some 12 other product categories.

Amazon will now sell 15,000 food products in Canada at amazon.ca/grocery, including baby food and formula, snacks, baking goods and coffee and flowers.

The online giant is not adding frozen or fresh food to its assortment.

“Amazon.ca dramatically increase our selection this year and we are pleased to now bring the auto and grocery stores to our customers,” said Alexander Gagnon, country manager for Amazon.ca.

“We’re working to deliver unmatched selection of everyday essentials and must-have products.”

Brands available on the site include Nestle, Campbell’s, Green Mountain and Kellogg’s with special emphasis on the homepage this morning on Nestle brands and categories such as organic, snack food, beverages and pantry staples like baking supplies.

Several categories focused on stock-up shopping. For instance, in coffee, Amazon.ca is selling a 96-pack of Timothy’s Breakfast Blend K-Cup coffee for $65.96 (or 69 cents per pod) with a promise of delivery by Friday Nov 1.

A 400-gram box of Kellogg’s Vector cereal, meanwhile, was selling for $5.39 while a six-pack of Cliff bars was going for $12.52.

Amazon said that most grocery items will be eligible for free shipping or Free Two-Day Shipping with Amazon Prime, which gives customers free shipping in exchange for a flat yearly fee.

On Amazon’s grocery website, there was also a message that offered free shipping on orders over $25.

In the United States, Amazon delivers fresh food to customers in Seattle and L.A. through its AmazonFresh division.

The company said earlier this year that it intends to expand that service to some 20 cities next year, including some outside the U.S. Toronto has been pegged as a likely target.

Analysts say that Amazon’s entry into grocery in Canada could cause upheaval within the industry since none of the major grocery chains in this country offer product sales online.

Walmart earlier this month started to sell some dry groceries over the Internet and Loblaw’s is selling Joe Fresh clothing.

The only major online grocers in Canada now are Grocery Gateway, a Longo’s subsidiary that does business in Toronto, and Well.ca, a Guelph, Ont.-based firm that ships dry goods nationally.

Less than one per cent of Canada’s $112 billion grocery business is done over the Internet, according to estimates.

But that figure is expected to rise as companies like Amazon and Walmart develop their offerings.

This story originally appeared in Canadian Grocer

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