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Grocery stores on wheels could soon be the new ice cream trucks in Canada

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Move over, ice cream vans; there’s a new truck in Canada this summer, and it’s bringing an entire grocery store directly to your door.

Whether you’ve fought online to secure a coveted grocery delivery slot or braved the incredibly long line-ups outside Costco, chances are that you know buying groceries in Canada has been a bit of a nightmare lately.

Luckily, a new Toronto start-up may be offering a solution.

Grocery Neighbour offers a fleet of mobile supermarkets, so Canadians can buy groceries from the comfort of their own homes.

“We’ll have technology to tell you when it’s pulling up, or to notify you to where the grocery truck is,” Founder Frank Sinopoli told CBC. “It will be like the ice cream truck when it pulls up: it will create that type of experience.”

grocery truck

An artist’s rendering of what the Grocery Neighbour trucks will look like. Image via Grocery Neighbour.

Sinopoli says that three trucks will operate in the Toronto area this summer, but he hopes to eventually expand to 1,000 grocery trucks country-wide.

In Calgary, Alta., Fresh Routes has been offering a mobile grocery delivery service since 2018 — but specifically in under-served communities.

The non-profit “grocery store on wheels” is housed in a souped-up city bus that travels on more than 60 routes in 20 communities every month. At its dedicated stops, customers can shop for discounted fresh produce.

The service expanded to Edmonton in October 2019.


Sysco Canada, one of the country’s largest food distributors to restaurants and hotels, has also launched a delivery truck service called [email protected] that will bring groceries straight to your door.

Unlike Grocery Neighbour, however, you can’t just browse on the spot; you’ll have to place an order in advance with Sysco.

Online shoppers can choose from restaurant-quality steaks, chicken, fresh produce, baking ingredients and more.

CartlyInstacartInabuggy and Save-On-Foods are also offering grocery delivery service directly to Canadians’ doorsteps.

Fingers crossed that somebody in Canada launches a mobile liquor store soon, too.


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