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The New York Times has a piece about the challenges that grocers face as they try to live up to online customers' expectations and still make a buck.

"The pandemic prompted millions of Americans to buy their groceries online and pick them up curbside or have them delivered," the Times writes, which means that "grocery companies are using tools that promise to map workers’ routes through stores and track their speed and accuracy, bringing metrics typically associated with warehouse jobs into local grocery aisles. Pickers, in turn, find themselves doing work that can be physically taxing, mentally stifling and increasingly guided by automation and technology … Online orders are costly for grocers, which already have incredibly thin profit margins and now find themselves building infrastructure to perform a task previously done by customers. Many customers expect the service to be cheap and fast, which requires labor."

The Times adds:  "While many consumers will likely return to stores as the pandemic abates, more than a third of online grocery shoppers said in a recent survey from Coresight Research that they expected to continue shopping that way."

You can read the entire piece here.