Retailers

Kroger’s Billion-Dollar Meal Kit Biz

Home Chef reaches major sales milestone
Kroger Home Chef
Photograph courtesy of Kroger

The Kroger Co. and Home Chef have reached a major milestone in meal solutions, with the brand surpassing $1 billion in annual sales. Founded in 2013 by Pat Vihtelic, Home Chef merged with the Cincinnati-based Kroger in 2018. Since then, the brands have focused on advancing the availability of mealtime shortcuts and solutions, offered new product innovations, and continued to transform how customers approach preparing meals, says the company. 

“Kroger’s commitment to being ‘Fresh for Everyone’ is underscored by our Home Chef products, which help us bring families together in the kitchen with meal options for any occasion,” said Dan De La Rosa, Kroger’s group VP of fresh merchandising, in a release. “We continue to strategically expand Home Chef offerings across our family of companies. Whether it’s meal kits, or heat-and-eat and ready-to-cook solutions—which are available via subscription, in-store, pickup, or delivery—it’s safe to say that Home Chef has mealtime covered.”

As more people turn to mealtime shortcuts like meal kits and heat-and-eat meals, Home Chef says it is listening to feedback and expanding its product selection to help customers reduce cooking time without sacrificing quality or flavor. 

“At Home Chef, we’re on a mission to make mealtime easier with fresh ingredients and simple instructions,” said Erik Jensen, president of Home Chef. “By offering time-saving meal solutions at Kroger Family of Stores, we’re able to simplify the cooking process, provide a wide variety of options, and allow customers to enjoy a delicious homemade experience. We’re excited to continue scaling the brand and creating new products that are accessible to customers nationwide.”

In recent months, the meal solutions market has become increasingly competitive with other players, including Blue Apron and the Berlin-based meal kit company HelloFresh, continuing to expand their offerings. Last month, Blue Apron introduced Heat & Eat, the company’s first-ever prepared, single-serving meal offering, ready in five minutes or less. And earlier this year, HelloFresh introduced HelloFresh Market, a digital grocery store offering customers a range of add-ons to the meal kit order they already receive on their doorstep.

Home Chef currently offers more than 500 products across a variety of categories, including meal kits, heat-and-eat meals, ready-to-eat products, and seasonal meals, among others. The brand says it will continue to create new products that offer customers a range of fresh mealtime shortcuts.

“Home Chef was founded on the idea to simplify mealtime with easy-to-make, delicious recipes,” said Vihtelic. “Since 2013, we’ve grown from delivering meals with a rented truck to becoming a leading brand for Kroger. With Kroger’s support, our two brands offer a collective passion to make mealtime easy and bring people together over a meal.”

Home Chef products can be purchased nationwide exclusively at more than 2,200 Kroger Family of Stores—both in-store and online via pickup or delivery—and through a home delivery subscription

 

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