Meal-kit delivery service Chefs Plate is aiming to take a bite out of grocery’s home meal replacement segment.
The Toronto-based company has launched a 15-minute meal kit it's positioning as a home meal replacement, featuring fresh, pre-cooked and pre-cut ingredients, delivered to customers’ doorsteps.
“ like cooking with us, but they were also looking for quicker alternatives from our traditional 30-minute plan for certain days of the week,” says Jamie Shea, CEO and co-founder of Chefs Plate. “We also saw an opportunity to attract a new customer base, which is why we’re targeting the HMR category in Canada. That is really all around Canadians who are very time-pressed and seeking more convenient alternatives.”
While Chefs Plate already competes with grocery retailers, Shea says, “now we’re allowed to steal customers from HMR and quick-service —those customers who are looking for quicker alternatives.”
When it comes to making meals, the need for speed is evident. According to NPD Group, 75% of all in-home meals are typically prepared in 15 minutes or less. And 2017 research from Mintel found that 85% of Canadians have purchased prepared/made-to-order foods from grocery retailers in the last three months, with younger Canadians 18 to 34 most likely (92%) to do so.
While HMR is typically a fully prepared food item, Shea says part of the advantage of the Chefs Plate’s new meal-kit is “it’s truly a fresh product that can get from kit to table in 15 minutes or less, whereas a lot of offerings in HMR have been cooked and they’ve been sitting there for a while.”
According to NPD Group, home-delivered meal kits are a $120-million industry in Canada, nearly doubling in growth since 2014. Other meal-kit delivery services on the Canadian scene include Hello Fresh, GoodFood and MissFresh.