The restaurant industry is one of the hardest hit by coronavirus-induced lockdown in the country. While the economy prepares to cautiously be back on track, the recovery phase for these businesses is expected to be a long process. Even when the restrictions are eased, restaurants and fine-dine hotels are unlikely to see a swarming crowd.
The way consumers purchase and receive food is undergoing substantial transformation!!
Need of the now is to not go back to business “as usual” but instead discover newer opportunities and adopt newer models that are aligned to what we face today – and what we could possibly face tomorrow. This puts the concept of DIY Meal Kit in a very favorable position. And it’s something the restaurant owners are steering towards owing to the evident opportunities that are on display in this niche.
“Meal kit delivery services have exploded over the past few years, bridging the space between home-cooked meals and takeout."
Plenty could be learned from the local players like Indian Meal Kit, Out of the Box, Awesome Chef, Being Chef, Burgandy Box and GetFresh, who, as early market players, continued to grow and thrive. They offer unique menus, have plenty of options, ensure quick cooking experience for the customers, and have various key elements that have people keep coming back.
Recent launch of “KitFresh” Meal Kit by renowned Chef Sanjeev Kapoor is one more sign that shows meal kit business is going to take off!! Alternatively, users of Amazon Echo, Fire TV and Alexa built-in devices can ask Alexa for audio cook-along recipes, powered by Klovechef, by simply saying, “Alexa, I want to cook KitFresh Meal”.
So, If you are also craving to eat some lip-smacking restaurant meal but can’t step out because of COVID-19; Don’t worry!!! Now, you can enjoy restaurant-style food at home with specially designed Meal Kits!! Lets understand, how it works!!
A Meal Kit can be defined as a subscription based foodservice business model where a company delivers proportioned and sometimes partially prepared food ingredients and recipes to the customers so that they can prepare home cook food. And the services that send pre-cooked meals are known as “Meal Delivery Services”.
The perks are there — you don’t need to shop or plan, you don’t need to buy ingredients you’ll never use again, and there often isn’t much food waste at meal-time, since everything is perfectly portioned. Companies also claim these boxes cut down on overeating.
And if you’re concerned about messing up a recipe you’ve never tried before, Don’t!!! The recipe cards that come with each meal are very detailed and easy to follow. Most of them have pictures of each step to make it as easy as possible to get it just right.
There are plenty of meal kit delivery services out there to choose from. Some of them are subscription-based, others allow you to stop and start service at any time. Whatever type you choose, you will be given a list of meal options on the company’s website to pick from. Most of the companies will offer a discount for first time customers and many of them offer free shipping for repeat customers. Just set up an account, decide what you want and place your order. Many of them will ask you to enter your zip code on their site to see, if you’re in their delivery area.
All you have to do when your order arrives; is unpack the box and put everything in the refrigerator or freezer until you’re ready to prepare it. With hardly any chopping or mixing to do, meal kits take somewhere around 25 to 30 minutes to get it done with very few cookware’s to execute.
P.S. Meal Kits don’t do dishes for you :P
Meal kit delivery companies can be a far better nutritional choice. Most of these types of companies employ chefs who choose the recipes and ingredients. Others employ registered dieticians or nutritionists who make food selections based on recommended daily allowances, so you’re getting the right amount of what your body needs. The best part is you get to choose what you want from all the healthy offerings.
If you’re a senior looking for ways to ensure you eat nutritious, home cooked meals but you don’t want to or can’t deal with the hassle of going to the grocery store – meal kit delivery services may be worth your consideration.
Given the mounting toll of planning most meals at home, rather than relying on dining out, it’s no wonder that easy-to-assemble meals are becoming a regular part of household grocery shopping. Driven by convenience, Meal kits are most popular among Millennials and Gen X’ers. Of these, the city-dwellers subscribe the most. That could be because the services are more widely available in urban settings. These shoppers also tend to have high incomes and high levels of education. Nearly two-thirds of this group work full-time or are self-employed, and about 12.2% have young children under the age of five.
With convenience comes the cost!!!
For all of their benefits, meal kits are praised as being cost effective and affordable. But are they truly cheaper than choosing your own groceries at a local store or dining out?
Surprisingly, there’s less of a cost difference between traditional grocery shopping and meal delivery services than you might think. Dining out is still the most expensive one out of all.
Of course, not all meal delivery kits are as affordable as others. If you are looking at specialized meal kits that emphasizes on healthy meals or you opt for larger portions; cost is definitely going to be higher. But there’s another factor you won’t want to forget: Your Time!! Using a meal kit saves your time. While this might not lead to savings in your wallet, it can lead to more free time to enjoy life with your family rather than cooking or shopping.
Meal kits are highly popular but get a bad environmental rap due to perceived packaging waste!!!
Challenge with a meal delivery service is that customers want fresh, preservative-free, perfect looking ingredients with minimum or no packaging. Unfortunately, this is not yet technologically possible!!!
While it is nice to have a box of ready to make food delivered to your door each week, the box and waste associated with it can be an environmental concern.
Each ingredient generally comes in a separate bag, plus the box, with its liners and plastic-wrapped ice packs. Some of the materials may be recyclable, and with some services, made of post-consumer waste. The whole process to make sure you’re being eco-friendly can be tedious and time consuming.
But a new study from University of Michigan researchers found that meal kits have a much lower overall carbon footprint than the same meals purchased at a grocery store, despite having more packaging.
Average greenhouse gas emissions were one-third lower for meal kit dinners than the store-bought meals when every step in the process—from the farm to the landfill—was considered, according to the study. And this is because pre-portioned ingredients and a streamlined supply chain that lowers the overall food loss and waste for meal kits compared to store-bought meals.
“So, while the packaging is typically worse for meal kits, it’s not the packaging that matters most,” “It’s food waste and transportation logistics that cause the most important differences in the environmental impacts of these two delivery mechanisms.”
This not being a justification for packaging wastes; many meal delivery services are responding to consumer concerns about packaging waste in innovative and sustainable ways by creating fully recyclable and compostable packaging made from sustainable materials. Pre-paying for shipping containers to be returned to the company is one more policy.
In the end, a large part of starting and growing the DIY Meal Kit business is strategy. Alongside the adequate infrastructure, human capital, marketing, and, most importantly, the quality of the product, it comes to what kind of strategy the business owner is working along with. Undoubtedly, a business that offers personalized recipes, kits with fresh ingredients, and various dishes that are custom to days and occasions – and offer them in a seamless manner – are inevitably positioned to ride this emerging wave of meal kits and win big in the long-run.
So, if you have a passion for food and want to start your own business, you should consider starting A Meal Prep Business. If you can create a killer business plan, get organized legally, and can cook really delicious food, then you have a meal prep business on your hands. Happy cooking!!!