UPDATE: Bi-Rite products come form the Divisadero location, reports the SF Chronicle, not the Mission location.
Food delivery of some stripe seems to be all the rage for start-ups these days—recently we reported on one of them that delivers juices. Grocery delivery services especially seem to be popping up on the regular—Amazon Fresh, Good Eggs and Google Shopping Express among them.
Adding more ammunition to the same-day grocery delivery competition is Instacart. The service already offers grocery delivery from Whole Foods, Safeway and Costco, but now it’s adding local favorite Bi-Rite to the mix. (This is the first time it’s partnered with Bay Area stores; Instacart users can already order groceries from Rainbow Grocery and Berkeley Bowl.)
If you are wondering about how Instacart works, you should know that the start-up offers people part-time work as personal grocery deliverers, about $15-$30 an hour as independent contractors. The New York Times argues that Instacart is similar to a lot of other sharing economy endeavors but different in some key ways:
It’s substantially more than the typical supermarket worker salary of about $9 to $11 per hour — though of course without any benefits like health insurance. Instacart says the workers are independent contractors, responsible for paying for expenses like their own Social Security taxes.
Still, Instacart’s success suggests that rather than simply automate workers out of their jobs, technology might create new labor opportunities for people who haven’t acquired formal credentials or skills in an economy where low- and medium-skilled workers face a bleak outlook. Like the ride-sharing service Uber, Instacart creates work by connecting affluent customers who have more money than time with part-time workers who have the opposite problem — lots of time, not enough money.
But unlike ride-sharing or apartment rental services, Instacart isn’t intruding upon a regulated industry, and its service poses little risk to its customers’ health or property, so it faces few of the complications that have dogged other sharing companies. READ MORE via the NYTimes.