We invented the supermarket trolley-basket
Plásticos Fleta S.A., a leading company in the manufacture of products for the food sector for over 30 years, embarked upon a new project with great enthusiasm – the development of a product that didn’t exist in the market – and worked with the conviction that we would set a new trend in the way people shopped in supermarkets. We were aware of the fact that there was a certain risk of this product not being accepted by customers, and that our entire financial investment and time spent on the project could go to waste. Nonetheless, we had a great deal of enthusiasm and faith in this project, and we decided to patent it, knowing that it was the first supermarket trolley-basket in the world. This story turned out to have a happy ending, as we were granted the European patent, figuring as inventors of this product. The trolley-basket had a great impact and amazed everybody worldwide, supermarkets and customers. Demand in Spainsoon started, and rapidly extended throughout Europe, and today our trolley-basket is being used in over 40 countries on the 5 continents… We have reached our objective – our product was setting a new trend and had definitely changed the way people shop in supermarkets worldwide. Our trolley-basket makes shopping easier for customers, and supermarkets have experienced increased sales in relation to traditional shopping baskets. Today, in spite of the legal setbacks we are experiencing in order to defend our patent against similar copies currently available on the market, we are continuing with this project with more enthusiasm than ever, developing new models with the features and characteristics demanded by the consumer
So, what has been the creation process of the trolley-basket?
The idea arose from an enthusiastic group of professionals led by Mr. Fleta, the person mainly responsible for this project and inventor of the trolley-basket.
Our company started the development of this product in 2002, fully aware of the need for a more practical shopping basket to the traditional model, a more comfortable type of basket that didn’t require bearing the weight of the shopping and that was easy to store in the supermarket. We have always kept in mind the needs of both the customers who are shopping and the supermarkets as regards an essential factor:avoiding the need to bear the weight of traditional shopping baskets while shopping.
According to our research, weight affected customers in the following way:
• Customers bearing heavy baskets suffered from backache, tiredness and a more stressful shopping experience.
• They also avoided overfilling their baskets so that they could handle them comfortably, which meant buying fewer goods than they would have if they had been using a more comfortable and practical basket, such as our trolley-basket.
The study of this problem led us to seek a solution that would allow us to improve the concept of the shopping basket, thereby making its use easier for both the consumer and the supermarkets. Throughout this process, we tested various different materials and wheels in order to achieve optimum performance. The strength of different materials was tested by filling the baskets with 20 kg for 8 hours a day. By doing so, we obtained the ideal trolley-basket, which was launched onto the market in 2003.