Kroger enters multi-year partnership with Gatik for autonomous trucks

The trucks will be used within Kroger’s distribution network in Dallas, delivering products from a fulfillment center to stores.
A photo of a Gatik/Kroger truck in a warehouse.
  • Kroger has entered a multi-year partnership to use autonomous trucks in Texas.
  • The trucks will transport products from a Dallas fulfillment center to stores.
  • Texas has been a popular destination for autonomous vehicle tests due to lax regulations on the industry. 

Kroger has entered a multi-year partnership with Gatik to use autonomous trucks in Texas. 

Gatik, an autonomous vehicle company that offers light- and medium-duty trucks, in a March 15 release said Kroger would use its medium-duty trucks to transport products from a fulfillment center in Dallas to the grocer’s stores.

The trucks, which will transport ambient, refrigerated and frozen food items, multiple times per day, seven days a week, according to the release. The trucks will start running in the second quarter of this year. 

“We are so excited to see Gatik trucks starting to deliver groceries throughout our Dallas division,” said Raúl Bujalil, vice president of supply chain strategy and technology enablers at Kroger, in the release. “These autonomous box trucks will help us continue our commitment to creating a seamless shopping experience — where customers can access their favorite fresh foods, with zero compromise on value or convenience.”

According to a 2021 release, the retailer said it used autonomous vehicles daily on a 7-mile loop between a dark store and one of its Neighborhood Market locations in Arkansas. Gatik also last year said it started using autonomous vehicles to deliver Georgia-Pacific paper products to 34 Walmart-owned Sam’s Club locations in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. 

Ikea last year started testing autonomous vehicles from Kodiak Robotics to make a 300-mile journey between its warehouse in Houston and a store in Dallas, Retail Leader previously reported. Texas has been popular for retailers looking to pilot autonomous vehicles due to limited regulations on the industry in the state, Reuters reported last year

Kroger is the largest supermarket operator in the U.S. and last year announced plans to merge with rival Albertsons. Kroger operates about 2,700 supermarkets in the U.S. and operates its namesake banner as well as several others, including Harris Teeter, King Soopers and Pick ‘n Save.