The Japanese government is utilizing RFID technology to make fully autonomous stores possible, enabling convenience for shoppers as well as combatting Japan's worker shortage

While many countries worry about their level of unemployment, Japan instead is contending with a shortage of workers. With that in mind, the country created an initiative to unman all convenience stores by 2025. The Japanese government has tasked materials science company Avery Dennison to help make the autonomous stores viable at scale.

One of the main goals is using RFID to preserve the freshness of the products in the store. Avery Dennison's technology can monitor the state of the food and automatically discount items that are nearing their expiration date, helping to drive shoppers to these products and reducing spoils. The company also designed the RFID chips to be microwave-safe, allowing them to remain on the items even after purchase.

Francisco Melo, the vice president of RFID for the company, says, “Innovation is at the core of what we do at Avery Dennison, and by combining our materials science expertise and knowledge of RFID technology over the past 10 years we have been able to develop WaveSafe to meet the needs of the food industry.” Japan hopes that this RFID tech could be the solution to make these types of stores possible across the country, helping combat loss of workers as well as automating less meaningful work.

Avery Dennison


Lead image: stock photos from Yupa Watchanakit/Shutterstock

While many countries worry about their level of unemployment, Japan instead is contending with a shortage of workers. With that in mind, the country created an initiative to unman all convenience stores by 2025. The Japanese government has tasked materials science company Avery Dennison to help make the autonomous stores viable at scale.

One of the main goals is using RFID to preserve the freshness of the products in the store. Avery Dennison's technology can monitor the state of the food and automatically discount items that are nearing their expiration date, helping to drive shoppers to these products and reducing spoils. The company also designed the RFID chips to be microwave-safe, allowing them to remain on the items even after purchase.