A woman testing virtual-reality goggles

Food industry manufacturers: Develop your business using augmented / virtual reality

Published on - updated on

As digital usages develop, what changes might they bring with them for the players in the food industry? 

What are the possible concrete applications of augmented reality in the food industry sector?

Encouraging purchases through augmented reality

 

VR Lab at SIAL Paris 2018
VR Lab at SIAL Paris 2018

©F. FOUCHA, X. MUYARD, L. DHERINES

We are now in the throes of rampant digital transformation, and it is estimated that the augmented reality market should be worth between €80 and €110 billion by 2025.

One of the many applications of augmented reality is the possibility of providing real-time information on your surroundings.

In the world of the food industry, this therefore offers an excellent means of meeting the growing need for information expressed by consumers for several years now. Sales engineers can also turn to augmented reality to facilitate training of teams on the ground and develop uniform merchandising strategies.

Informing and reassuring the consumer

A hand holding a mobile phone with photo of cantaloupe melon

In a context of heightened consumer mistrust with regard to the food market, augmented reality represents an ideal response to the need for transparency and monitoring. 

Laurent Lachaze, CEO of EasyCom, advises against simply relying on what he calls the "WOW effect" of the digital. Sharing information about the product with the end consumer, in a fun and instructive way, must address a genuine need.

Using a simple smartphone, you can scan what you need to buy (without a QR code). It is up to the brand to choose what it does or does not wish to communicate: list of ingredients, product traceability, region or country of production, or even how to use (when instructions need to be given).

For example, Easycom has developed a solution for teaching how to use powdered milk for a target audience not used to it. This kind of issue can crop up in many cases, and particularly when you wish to launch a product on a different cultural market.

Since you cannot always try a product before buying it, particularly in the world of food, the information given via augmented reality helps to convince the consumer to buy this product rather than another one.

Augmented reality: a CSR tool?

 

As part of a communication strategy, it is possible to conduct a factory visit via augmented reality at a trade fair or an event. In this way, this technology represents an opportunity for communicating your CSR commitments to both prospective clients and investors, by promoting ecologically responsible production units, and so on.

 

Towards a new way of doing your food shopping?

 

A couple cooking together in the kitchen and looking at a smartphone

Imagine, tomorrow, being able to stroll the aisles of a foodstore without leaving your sofa. Although this may remain a vision for the moment, we can easily imagine augmented reality offering these flexibility gains in the future. All this without losing out on experience, since it will be possible to conceive a true customer pathway, with guidance towards a particular product.

The applications of augmented reality in the world of the food industry seem almost infinite. The future will show us which of the technology's usages are set to last and be developed, to the point of being truly adopted among consumer habits.