Progressive Grocer

JUN 2016

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12 SOLUTIONS JUNE 2016 by zip code so that stores will be able to fne-tune their food preparation even more precisely. "We also extend the reach outside of stores through dig- ital engagement, which grocers need to be doing more," says Hays. "As an industry, we need to pivot to become more of a service industry and not just a commodity provider trying to provide the lowest prices. "DinnerCall is a new revenue stream that can compete with drive-thrus and takeout, while also making the most of resources that grocery stores already have," Hays notes. As a co-founder of Charley Biggs Food Company, a fresh "instore" foodservice and product set designed for deli foodservice and used by 750 retailers throughout North America, he knows how to maximize grocerant capabilities. "Most stores can do anything—they have smokers, holding ovens, steamers," he says. "With the explosion of culinary meals and no fear of shrink, stores can take the lead here. Partner with local chefs for recipe devel- opment, make the most of your best-selling meals, have meals at a variety of price points and at real consumption levels to bring families back to the table." Carlisle, Pa.-based Giant Food Stores, a division of Ahold USA, decided to jump straight into the meal kit market with the late 2015 rollout of its sophisticated line of fresh meal kits. "Our kits are currently available in select Giant Food Stores and via Peapod in select markets," says Juan De Paoli, senior vice president, own brands for Ahold USA. "Customers can choose to pick up a box through which- ever method is most convenient for them: during their instore shop, via Peapod delivery or at a Peapod pickup point. Unlike the meal order brands, this is not a subscription service, so our customers have more fexibility. Tere is no long-term commitment to buy a specifed number of meal kits." Te kits, which cook in 35 min- utes or less, will vary by season, including such oferings as mini Italian-style meatloaf with couscous and fresh vegetables, and pan-seared boneless pork chops with apple and honey mustard sauce, roasted Brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes. A kit that serves two people is $14.99; two kits are $24.99. "At any given point, we like to ensure customers have several recipes from which to choose—a range of pro- teins, ingredients and favors for every taste," says De Paoli. "Recipes are seasonally relevant and rotated every few months so customers can con- tinue to experience something new. All our recipes are tri- ple-tested, include seasonal fresh produce and have some prepared elements (for example, chopped onions) to save our customers time." G Giant Food Stores: Making upscale meals accessible As more startups enter the meal kit market, many will be looking to put an individual stamp on their products, much as these meal kit companies have already done: Chef 'd—recipes and kits, often extravagant, based on the well-known chefs who created them Green Chef—frst and only fully certifed organic meal kit company shipping nationwide GreenBlender—weekly delivery of fve new smoothie recipes and all the pre-portioned ingre- dients needed to make 10 smoothies Little Green Gourmets—healthy meals for chil- dren, delivered to the New York area Pantry—counter-intuitively, brings the delivery meal kit into a brick-and-mortar shopping experi- ence in the Washington Square neighborhood of Brookline, Mass. PeachDish—Southern-infused and seasonally inspired recipes The Purple Carrot—vegetarian fare created under the guidance of former writer Mark Bittman, chief innovation ofcer Finding niches within a niche

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