Shoppers accept implant and eye recognition payment schemes

Consumers are willing to have microchips inserted in their bodies as a way of paying for goods at supermarket checkouts, according to research from grocery think tank IGD.

The research reports that 8% of teenagers and 5% of adults surveyed are open to the implants, while 7% of shoppers also favour iris or retina recognition payment systems.

IGD chief executive Joanne Denney-Finch says the research concludes that only 31% of shoppers expect to buy all of their groceries at supermarket in the future. The findings contrast with the belief of many retail experts that consumers are increasingly seeking “everything under one roof”.

Denny-Finch, who was speaking at the IGD 2006 Convention, adds: “New technology, online shopping, ethical shoppers, healthy eating, environmentalism and [other] new attitudes from a new generation of shoppers are combining to shake up the status quo. We should stop claiming this is a mature industry.”

Meanwhile, almost one-third of the 1,000 shoppers surveyed say they want self-scanning systems at checkouts. This follows claims from consumer group Which? that Tesco’s self-service tills have been targeted by fraudsters, who have been able to pay for goods with stolen cards because the tills do not require a signature or PIN to complete a transaction (MW last week).

Tesco says the level of fraud at these pay points is no greater than at any other type of retail checkout.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here