Scan-and-Go Meets Bad Apples at Wegmans

Tired of battling shoplifters, the supermarket chain calls it quits with its SCAN app.

September 16, 2022

ALEXANDRIA, Va.—Scan-and-go apps are supposed to enhance the customer experience by removing friction from the checkout experience, but for some retailers, that comes at a cost in terms of shrinkage. Wegmans is tired of the battle, so it is retiring its SCAN app on Sunday until it can figure out a way to prevent shoplifting at the checkout, The Buffalo News reports.

Using the app, Wegmans’ shoppers can scan their items and bag them as they shop the supermarket. The Rochester, N.Y.-based company rolled out the app in 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

"SCAN users have told us they love the app and the convenience it offers. We love it too and have tried many adjustments to keep it. Unfortunately, the losses we are experiencing from this program prevent us from continuing to make it available in its current state," the supermarket chain said in an email sent to SCAN customers.

“We’ve made the decision to turn off the app until we can make improvements that will meet the needs of our customers and business. We’ve learned a lot, and we will continue to introduce new digital solutions to streamline the shopping experience for the future,” Wegmans said.

On October 1 at the NACS Show in Las Vegas, hear how two leading retailers are using self-checkout in their c-stores during the “Self-Checkout Strategies” education session from noon to 1 p.m. Register for the NACS Show today.

Read more about frictionless checkout systems in “Self-Checkout Strategies” in the March issue of NACS Magazine.

Meanwhile, Wegmans said it will remove single-use plastic bags from its 18 stores in Pennsylvania beginning September 22. The move follows the elimination of single-use plastic bags in its Maryland, North Carolina and Virginia stores in July. Wegmans has pledged to reducing its in-store plastic packaging made from fossil fuels, along with other single-use plastics, by 10 million pounds by 2024, the company said.

“We started on this journey in 2019 when we set out to eliminate plastic bags in our New York State stores ahead of the state plastic bag ban. A lot has happened over the last three years, but that early success in New York showed us the impact we could make and drove us to continue on our journey to be plastic bag free by the end of 2022,” said Jason Wadsworth, Wegmans category merchant for packaging, energy, and sustainability.