McDonald’s Mobile Payments, Uber Eats Cannabis

Today in restaurant and grocery tech news, McDonald’s adds mobile payment options in Singapore, and Uber Eats announced the addition of a cannabis seller to its marketplace in Ontario, Canada. Plus, grocers contend with holiday season supply chain challenges.

FAT Brands Acquires Wings Chain as Delivery Boom Reshapes Menus

With the continuing stickiness of digital ordering, deliverability is becoming a driving force for major restaurant brands’ menu decisions. On Monday (Nov. 22), FAT Brands, the parent company of 15 restaurant chains including Johnny Rockets, Fatburger and Hurricane Grill & Wings, announced the acquisition of another brand, Native Grill & Wings, an Arizona-based chain with 23 locations across Arizona, Illinois and Texas. Known for its wings, the brand also serves a number of other delivery-friendly foods including pizza, burgers, sandwiches and salads.

Uber Eats to Take Cannabis Orders in Canada

Uber is getting into the cannabis business, at least in one part of the world. As Reuters reported on Monday (Nov. 22), the ride-hailing giant says it will begin allowing customers in Ontario, Canada to order cannabis through the Uber Eats app. Uber Eats will begin listing the cannabis retailer Tokyo Smoke on its marketplace starting on Monday, allowing customers to place orders and pick them up at the chain’s nearest location, a company spokesperson told the outlet.

Virtual Kitchens Put Restaurants in Control of Menus, Digital Presence

“Restaurants often have this misplaced reputation to be slow adopters of technology, and we’ve seen just the opposite — the restaurant partners we … work with are incredibly innovative and receptive to new technologies, platforms and ideas,” Ken Chong, co-founder and CEO at restaurant solutions provider All Day Kitchens and former product manager at Uber, told PYMNTS in an interview.

McDonald’s Offers Mobile Payment Option in Singapore

Customers visiting the Golden Arches in Singapore can pay for their fast food orders online, at the drive-thru, in-store or via self-ordering kiosks with mobile payment app GrabPay, according to a Monday (Nov. 22) press release. GrabPay is the first non-bank digital wallet to be accepted at McDonald’s locations in Singapore, as well as on the McDelivery app and website, the announcement states.

Empty Store Shelves Test Grocery Store Customer Loyalty

Grocers are already seeing supply chain challenges’ negative impact on their ability to meet demand this holiday season. The Lakeland, Florida-based supermarket chain Publix, which operates 1,289 stores in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia, confirmed to Jacksonville, Florida’s First Coast News on Friday (Nov. 19) that it is limiting certain items to two per person during the season, “due to ongoing supply issues and increased holiday demand.”

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NEW PYMNTS DATA: THE 2021 HOLIDAY SHOPPING OUTLOOK

About: It’s almost go time for the holiday shopping season, and nearly 90% of U.S. consumers plan to make at least some of their purchases online — 13% more than did in 2020. The 2021 Holiday Shopping Outlook, PYMNTS surveyed more than 3,600 consumers to learn what is driving online sales this holiday season and the impact of product availability and personalized rewards on merchant preference.