Amazon has made a strong push in the grocery market as of late. Before it acquired national health food chain Whole Foods for a whopping $13.7 billion US, Amazon was already stocking up your fridge with its Prime Pantry and Amazon Fresh services. And now, according to reports from a British media outlet, the retail giant is looking to get into the meal kit business as well.
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Based on information from The Times in Britain, Amazon filed a trademark earlier this month for a Blue Apron-style semi-prepared meal service. While Amazon Fresh already has pre-prepared food options from third party companies like Tyson Foods and Martha Stewart, it looks as though Amazon is looking to offer up its own meals similar to the way its AmazonBasics brand does in other product categories.
The trademark itself, which was filed on July 6th, describes a line of prepared food kits ready for assembly by the purchaser with a tagline that reads as follows: We do the prep. You be the chef. While not much else is known as far as details on the meal kits themselves, reports from CNBC seem to suggest the dishes will primarily consist of pasta, rice and grains.
As expected, it may be a while before Amazon gets this thing up and running, but there is a strong likelihood the Whole Foods acquisition could come into play here as far as deliveries and pickups. While there is no word on whether or not Amazon will completely take over that end of the Whole Foods business, competitors in the prepared meal kit space certainly have reason for worry.
Blue Apron is one of the biggest meal kit companies on the block and its stock price is already dropping on the heels of today’s news. Experts suggest Amazon’s interest in the space along with its new Whole Foods division has already caused a 30-percent dip in Blue Apron stock with no signs of course correction on the horizon.
While price and variety will certainly be a factor here in the long run, folks like Blue Apron are going to have a hard time keeping up with Amazon’s aggressive listings in combination with the value Prime memberships will likely offer to its prepared meal kit customers.