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Would Mark Twain have scanned a QR code?

When smartphones evolved to the point where they could scan quick response codes, many produce companies were among early adopters of the two dimensional codes. Now, four years into the trend, some in the industry are abandoning the black and white squares. Others, including HarvestMark founder Elliot Grant, say reports of the death of QR codes are like the proverbial premature obituary for Mark Twain — greatly exaggerated. Courtesy CMIUsing redesigned bags for its imported Ambrosia apples this season, Columbia Marketing International is running a QR code test in conjunction with a consumer contest for upscale kitchen gadgets to determine how shoppers access their website. Not comfortable with either of those views, Columbia Marketing International, Wenatchee, Wash., decided to dig for data. “We’re a little surprised with the initial data,” said Steve Lutz, vice president of Wenatchee, Wash.-based CMI. “Conventional wisdom is that QR codes are dead, but we are still getting a lot of traffic. The problem is we don’t know where the scans are being done, at home or in the store.”

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