Coles’ most sustainable supermarket yet

5th May 2020 | Eativity editors

Coles has thrown a lifeline to Victorian food suppliers who are struggling with the impact of COVID-19, opening its newest store in Melbourne’s Hawthorn with a focus on local sourcing.

The store is an example of a new supermarket format that’s tailored specifically to the needs of local customers. It also incorporates a range of environmental initiatives that have made it the most sustainable Coles supermarket in Australia.

Coles Local features free recycled customer carry boxes in place of plastic bags, a dedicated eco-friendly product section, a policy to encourage zero food waste, reduced plastic packaging on fresh products and energy-efficient doors on fridges. Even team member uniforms are made from 65 percent recycled plastic bottles.

Coles Local
The majority of the new Coles staff live within 5km of the store.

Keeping the cakes coming

The product range has been selected to match the needs of local shoppers. It includes products from 80 speciality local growers, bakers, producers and cafes. This includes iconic Melbourne cake and pastry maker Brunetti, which was forced to close.

Brunetti owner Yuri Angele says he’s pleased to be partnering with Coles. It has allowed the business to offer an expanded range of sweets and pastries.

“We’re very excited to be partnering exclusively with Coles Local to offer a range of artisan desserts,” he says. “We are very appreciative of their support. COVID has heavily impacted Brunetti; we’ve had a 90 percent reduction in revenue.

“We have had to make some significant adjustments to our manufacturing capacities. Previously, Brunetti relied solely on its retail stores to generate income. This is the first time that we’ve pivoted our retail strategy to sell our products outside of our stores.”

Coles Local
The product range showcases the wares of local growers and producers.

Shop, scan and go

Coles Local Hawthorn has been tailored to meet the needs of the local customer base. There’s a high proportion of millennials here, as the store is located next to Swinburne University. Coles research shows that millennials seek out food retailers that are both convenient and sustainable. They also shop more regularly than older customers.

To reduce time spent at the checkout, Coles Local Hawthorn is also the first Coles supermarket to only accept card payments at self-scanning checkouts.

The store offers locals the most convenient end-to-end shopping experience, according to Coles Group CEO Steven Cain. “The smaller format is designed to inspire customers,” he says. “We provide quality food through an in-store experience specifically tailored to the local community. We’re committed to becoming Australia’s most sustainable supermarket. This store in Melbourne is at the forefront of our strategy to achieve this.”

Coles Local
Billy the British bulldog checks out the treats on offer.

Doggone it

Coles Local stores have proven to be a hit with customers, and the company now plans to roll the format out to NSW. Sydney’s first Coles Local will open in Rose Bay this month.

The expanded convenience offering includes an extensive vegan and vegetarian range, Japanese mochi ice cream, self-serve barista-quality coffee from DC Speciality Coffee Roasters and a cinema-style candy bar. There are also more than 350 lunch and dinner options that you can prepare in 30 minutes or less.

The options for self-serve also extend to four-legged customers with a supermarket first: frozen pet food ice cream. Now dog-loving shoppers can spoil their pooch with an icy treat.