This Snack Food Corporation Has a Creepy Plan to Spy on You in the Grocery Store

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It’s not quite “Minority Report”-levels of creepiness, but it’s getting there.

Mondelez International, whose properties include Chips Ahoy, Nabisco, Ritz and other high-profile snack brands, says it’s planning to debut a grocery shelf in 2015 that comes equipped with sensors to determine the age and sex of passing customers.

The shelf, which is hooked up to Microsoft’s Kinect controller, will be able to use basic facial features like bone structure to build a profile of a potential snacker, Mondelez chief information officer Mark Dajani told the Wall Street Journal. While pictures of your actual face won’t be stored, aggregate demographic data from thousands of transactions will be.

The company expects the shelf to help funnel more of the right products to the right consumers, and even convince undecideds to commit to an impulse buy by offering well-timed in-store commercials or coupons when the embedded weight sensor learns they’ve picked up an item. The move is almost certain to make it more difficult to resist junk foods.

Of course, what one industry tries, another could copy. Imagine if the produce aisle starts talking about the beta carotene in carrots. Then the problem won’t be a matter of healthy foods getting squeezed out of the picture, but of consumers being bombarded with a cacophony of ads, all the time. Maybe we’re not so far from “Minority Report’s” vision after all.

  • sbiroc

    Our privacy is being so violated in so many ways already. I would purposely turn my back to these products and never purchase them again out of principal. Too bad for them because I just bought Chips ahoy 2 days ago. Shame on you

  • budahh

    “Minority Report,” indeed, and also “Max Headroom.”
    Just because it can be done with “modern tech” does not mean it should be done.
    A demonstration of this would be that we should be allowed to “mine” the homes of those who think they want to use this unwise technology.
    Somehow, i doubt they want their family monitored (spied on) 24/7.

  • ksm167Z2Z2Z

    $5.10 for a bag of killer-sh*t that cost them about, well, about .25 to produce?? No thanks.

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  • Trippin McZoink

    I’ll be taking a hammer with me when I shop.