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Paper submitted to 2019 International Urban Freight Conference, October 15-18, 2019, Long Beach, CA.

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Selling -- Groceries, Electronic commerce, Grocery shopping, Grocery trade -- Oregon -- Portland, Food security


The adoption of e-grocery home delivery (HD) has the potential to change social norms of acquiring household foods and sundries. This case study of Portland, OR reviews the new elements of distribution, inclusion, exclusion, and value created by the service of four major e-grocery businesses: Shipt, Instacart, Amazon Prime Now, and Walmart. These e-grocers are reviewed in terms of service areas, pricing, and inventory choice, as these are key factors on consumer experience. New distribution services are not confided or distributed around traditional industrial or wholesale land use areas. Coverage is extensive, in the Portland metropolitan statistical area, 94% of residents were eligible for e-grocery HD from at least one platform or retailer. In regards to equity, 91% of residents of a USDA-identified, low-income, low-access (LILA) census tracts are eligible for HD from at least one platform/retailer. E-grocery home delivery is also discussed with attention to vulnerable population groups that may experience barriers to adoption, as well as vulnerable populations that may benefit.

Keywords: E-grocery, home delivery, land use, food distribution, food deserts, food access, food equity

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