Amazon is expected to enter the prepared meal kit market soon. The American retail giant has been diversifying its business in recent years and this will be a big step towards this strategy. The company is in the process of testing its Amazon Meal Kits in various cities across the US.
One customer in Seattle was among the first few people to try the new Amazon service. Josh Chadd speaking to online media outlets said that he had ordered a pre-portioned Steak Au Poivre on the Amazon website. Chadd, who is also an Amazon Fresh customer, said that the kit came with prepared ingredients and a simple recipe to follow.
The Steak Au Poivre is just one of the meals available on the website. The trial phase could pave the way for Amazon’s plans to start offering meal kits. The trials started at the end of June and seem to be right on course. At the moment, users who are participating in the pilots will have a total of 17 different meals that they can order through the meal kit service. The meals come in different prices ranging between $14.99 and $18.99. According to Chadd, the meals compared favorably to other meal kit services including Blue Apron, Sun Basket, Hello Fresh, and Home Chef.
Amazon has been making headway in areas that appeared out of bounds before. The American online retail giant is already in the fresh produce business with its new Amazon Fresh service. In addition to this, Amazon also confirmed the acquisition of Whole Foods a few weeks back as part of its strategy to stamp its mark in the grocery market. All these strategies are aimed at diversification. The company is also offering its Prime customers a fashion delivery service. The decision to move into meal kits, however, comes as a surprise but even then, for a company that is already selling groceries and piloting an idea of a cashier-less shopping experience, there is no doubt that nothing seems beyond it now.
Despite these trials, it’s important to make it clear that Amazon is known to take its time. So if you were hoping to start using the Amazon Meal Kits service in a few weeks, perhaps you’ll have to wait a little bit longer. The online retailer took its time with the Amazon Fresh service focusing on a more gradual and assured roll out other than a full blown out launch. There is no reason to believe that things will be different with the meal kits.
Nonetheless, there is no doubt that companies that have since dominated this sector including Blue Apron will now have something to worry about. The acquisition of Whole Foods, in particular, will provide the required distribution capabilities for Amazon to roll out the meal kits in a far bigger way compared to its grocery service that didn’t have the advantage of a large scale retail chain as part of its distribution. There is also a broad food choice at Whole Foods and this could be a big advantage in appealing to more people over the coming months. The trials are, however, still at their infancy stage so we’ll have to wait and see.