The average consumer spends about 60 hours grocery shopping per year. Hours spent in an environment that raises alarms for both germaphobes and public health experts. UVD Robots yesterday said it has partnered with OCC Commercial Consulting to offer hospital-grade disinfection systems for supermarkets, providing a safe shopping experience for employees and customers.
“We look forward to partnering with OCC to help the retail sector quickly address COVID-19 contamination concerns while supporting long-term strategies for more effective infection prevention,” stated Per Juul Nielsen, CEO of UVD Robots. It is the company's first deal in the food and beverage market.
UVD Robots is a brand of Odense, Denmark-based “venture factory” Blue Ocean Robotics. The company's service robot portfolio also includes the GoBe telepresence robot and PTR Robots for safe patient transfer and rehabilitation. Blue Ocean was recently included on Fast Company’s Top 10 “Most Innovative Robotics Companies 2021.”
Disinfection and data in grocery stores
A 2017 study found that grocery store carts have 361 times more bacteria than a bathroom doorknob — with 75% of the germs found on those carts considered harmful to humans. Refrigerator doors can have as much as 1,235 times more bacteria than a cellphone, and one of the most common types of bacteria found on these doors is resistant to antibiotics, said UVD Robots.
Based on preset schedules and mapped routes, UVD Robots claimed that it can decontaminate an estimated 700 sq. m (7,534.7 sq. ft.) in about an hour. This enables rapid disinfection of typical retail layouts without requiring staff on site to administer it, said the partners.
Disinfecting supermarkets or public spaces with UV-C lights is not a new concept, acknowledged the company. However, stationary systems, ultraviolet ceiling lights, and air purifiers do not offer complete disinfection because of shadowed or remote areas, said UVD Robots.
The company said it can solve the challenges of shadowing and repositioning while providing 24/7 access to real-time compliance and efficacy reports.
UVD Robots said its autonomous mobile robot is sold in more than 60 countries worldwide, making it one of the world’s most popular.
OCC Commercial Consulting works with UVD
UVD Robots received an order of 200 robots from the European Commission in Novermber 2020, followed by an order for 100 more in September 2021. The global partners plan to focus on the food and beverage retail sector.
OCC Commercial | Consulting s.a.r.l.-s. specializes in the food and beverage, production, and trade sectors. With over 30 years of market experience, the agency said it supports individual optimization, conceptual considerations, up-to-date concept adjustments, and strategic realignment. It also said it has expertise in the import, export, and retail sailes of consumer goods in the non-food and premium food and beverage sectors.
The partnership enables OCC to deploy UVD Robots to autonomously disinfect store spaces, including shelves, aisles, and checkout areas. It will provide comprehensive infection prevention using germicidal UV-C lighting equipment against viruses and bacteria on surfaces and the air, killing more than 99.99% of microorganisms including SARS-CoV 2 and E. Coli.
“Disinfecting retail environments is the perfect job for UVD Robots, as they can effortlessly navigate aisles after hours,” said Claus Risager, CEO at Blue Ocean Robotics.
Initially, OCC Commercial Consulting will focus on deploying UVD Robots in the German market, but it is planning to expand into the rest of Europe.
We are excited to provide UV disinfection robots with autonomous mobility to a market in great need,” said Salvatore Orto, founder of OCC Commercial Consulting. “Supermarkets must make their employees and customers feel confident that all that can be done to keep them safe and healthy is being done.”
Email Sign Up
Get news, papers, media and research delivered
Stay up-to-date with news and resources you need to do your job.
Research industry trends, compare companies and get market intelligence every week with Robotics 24/7.
Subscribe to our robotics user email newsletter and we'll keep you informed and up-to-date.