By JACK WEATHERLY
Some Kroger stores in Mississippi will soon be teaming with Uber, the ride-sharing firm, to deliver groceries.
The pilot program is expected for the chain’s Delta Division, which includes much of Mississippi, including metro Jackson, “sometime before the end of the year,” said spokeswoman Teresa Dickerson.
“Our customers are changing and we want to keep up with their needs. It’s all about convenience,” said Dickerson, whose Memphis-based division also includes west Tennessee and parts of Arkansas and Kentucky.
The arrangement is already being tested in different markets around the country.
The giant food chain is linking the service with ClickList, the service it started in some areas of the country and in Mississippi last year that enables customers to shop online and schedule a pickup time in a Kroger lot.
Cincinnati-based Kroger, the nation’s largest operator of traditional supermarkets, has dramatically expanded its ClickList online order and customer pickup service over the past year and a half, according to the Cincinnati Business Courier.
With the Uber connection, the deliveries would be made for a fee.
In Richmond, Va., for instance, the delivery charge is $11.95, which includes $4.95 for the ClickList fee, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch.
Customers log into ClickList and select “curbside pickup” or “home delivery,” the Times-Dispatch said.
The new service is part of a trend that has seen Amazon.com begin offering home delivery of groceries in some bigger cities, and other grocers providing the service in select markets.