Ministry rolls out 'Smart Grocery Plus' programme
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Ministry rolls out 'Smart Grocery Plus' programme

The Commerce Ministry in partnership with 28 partners from both from the public and private sectors on Wednesday embarked on a "Smart Grocery Plus" programme to raise the competitiveness of local grocery shop operators amid stiffer competition in the domestic retail market.

According to Deputy Commerce Minister Sinit Lertkrai, the Smart Grocery Plus programme aims to promote and develop small-scale Thai grocery shops nationwide to become smart with a good image, technology adoption in store management and an online channel.

More importantly, the programme aims to lower operational costs for local grocery shops, increase their sales income and raise their competitiveness.

Under the programme, the Business Development Department under the Commerce Ministry would select and upgrade 286 grocery shops across the country to become prototype stores which would later be tasked with helping local small-scale grocery operators nationwide to become smarter.

The programme aims for one prototype store to be able to develop a network of three smart grocery stores, with the total number of smart grocery shops reaching 738 at the end of this year.

According to Mr Sinit, the Commerce Ministry and partners would lay down guidelines for smart grocery shop development in every dimension and bring technology to strengthen local groceries into digital platforms.

The local grocery shops which are developed and upgraded to become smart grocery shops would receive a logo stating "Smart Grocery Plus by DBD and friends" displayed on the front of their outlets. The logo will show the potential of local grocery stores that have been developed and upgraded to smart grocery stores. The development will be related to business operations, and management technology with beautiful, bright, clean, comfortable decor that would help attract customers to the stores.

The development would increase sales and create the opportunity to participate in government assistance projects to help reduce the cost of living for the public, said Mr Sinit.

The Smart Grocery Plus programme is an extension of the Smart Grocery project, aimed at enhancing the knowledge and potential of entrepreneurs under developed prototype wholesalers and retailers. The programme is handled by the Business Development Department in cooperation with the Wholesale and Retail Trade Association and provincial commerce offices, which will closely monitor their operations and provide assistance.

The Smart Grocery Plus programme will run during the period 2020-2026.

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