Walmart Canada tests grocery pickup

MISSISSAUGA, Ont. — Walmart Canada is piloting in-store pickup for online grocery orders in the Ottawa area beginning this week, less than a month after rolling out grocery e-retail offerings in Barrhaven. In addition to the Barrhaven location, shoppers will be able to pick up online grocery orders at the banner’s two Kanata locations, and in Carleton Place, Renfrew and Pembroke. The pilot will be extended to the remaining Ottawa stores later this month.

Walmart joins a growing trend among retailers such as Loblaw, which introduced its “Click and Collect” service at three Toronto-area stores in the fall and an Ottawa location last month. But the pilot is mainly a defence against Amazon’s looming Amazon Fresh program, Retail Prophet founder Doug Stephens told the Toronto Star. The Amazon subsidiary offers same-day delivery of fresh food but is currently limited to select U.S. markets. To date, offers only dry goods, but its competitors are bracing themselves for Amazon Fresh’s potential expansion.