In its latest push to win over more millennials (who tend to prefer rival Amazon.com when it comes to arranging their grocery deliveries online), Wal-Mart on Monday revealed that it’s launching its own line of meal kits that will be sold in its stores and through its online grocery delivery service. The kits will soon be made available in as many as 2,000 Wal-Mart stores by the end of 2018, the company said.
By launching its own line of meal kits, Wal-Mart is directly challenging popular delivery-only kit businesses like Blue Apron and HelloFresh, which don’t have a large retail presence to help pass their products along to consumers. Most analysts covering the retail sector expect the meal-kit industry to balloon over the coming years. One firm estimated that meal kits would expand to between $3 billion and $5 billion over the next 10 years.
Offering meal kits is one component of Wal-Mart’s plan to expand its online grocery pickup service across the country as it develops its new system for tracking the freshness of produce. it’s also seen as a “millennial friendly” offering that will help lure younger customers to its e-commerce offerings.
Each kit will serve two people and range in price from $8 to $15. Options so far will include Steak Dijon and Pork Florentine, CNBC reported. Business Insider, meanwhile, says the kits will come in three varieties divided up by prep time. One kit will be ready-made and only need to be heated. Another will require slightly more preparation and can be paired with Wal-Mart’s rotisserie chicken.
A third version will feature pre-chopped and pre-measured ingredients, just like Blue Apron.
“Customers are busier than ever and we know getting a delicious dinner on the table can be a chore. We’re here to help,” said Tyler Lehr, senior vice president and general merchandise manager of deli services for Walmart.
“These delicious meals give the best or worst of cooks a fresh, easy option for dinner tonight, or later this week,” he added.
Blue Apron is now at record lows, down over 75% from its IPO day highs…
After closing dozens of its Sam’s Club stores around the country, Wal-Mart revealed that it is converting some of the old SC locations into distribution centers for its online grocery business.
Wal-Mart isn’t the first brick-and-mortar grocer to venture into the meal-kit market: Last summer, Albertsons acquired Plated, and has been slowly rolling it out in Wal-Mart stores.