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Yet Another Twist in Meal Delivery

A new startup has a different take on meal kits

The Lempert Report

Mosaic, a startup from two former execs at Blue Apron, wants to change the game by offering direct-to-consumer meals that are frozen. Mosaic is available with one-day delivery in New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, D.C., and parts of Connecticut, Delaware and New Jersey.

Mosaic’s first offerings include six vegetarian bowls made with fresh ingredients. Mosaic cooks those ingredients via roasting, grilling or sauteing, and then freezes them. Each bowl comes with packaged sauces and garnishes. They range in price from $8.99 to $12.49 per meal, depending on the size box you get. A four-meal box costs $12.49 per meal, while a 12-meal box costs $8.99 per meal. Customers can subscribe for deliveries every one, two, four or eight weeks.

The company told TechCrunch, “We decided to do it because there’s so much potential in frozen food that’s untapped; there’s an opportunity to make amazing frozen foods.” They go on to say that “frozen food is an amazing way to work at scale, preserve food and reduce food waste.”  

The two co-founders may be starting a war: They say the frozen foods available in the supermarket today are not really cooked. “Most frozen food is a bunch of veggies that are boiled but not roasted or seasoned. Our mantra is real ingredients, actual cooking using real techniques like ovens and seasoning, and rethinking the packaging food comes in. We’re reclaiming this category and we want to bring it back into good standing.”

What they don’t realize is that many frozen foods in today’s cases are vastly improved over what we would have found there 10 years ago and are much less expensive than the $9 to $12 Mosaic’s bowls are priced at. I wish them all the best, and lots of luck, because I expect to see the frozen-food companies—especially the new startups—fight back hard, and the consumer interest to be mediocre at best. To have yet another meal kit delivery, rather than adding high-quality frozen to their supermarket delivery, will be a hard sell.

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