WATT Poultry USA - February 2018 - 47
Meal kits place all the ingredients for a dish
together for consumers looking for convenience.
Merrimon | Bigstock.com
"Meal kits as a concept, as a product innovation,
as a category are never going away. They're just not,"
Sheehan said. "But subscription services will."
While one grocer, Albertsons, acquired one such company to gain meal kit knowhow, Sheehan said grocers show
little interest in acquiring meal kit companies because they
can do it themselves at much greater profit. Subscriptionbased services struggle to retain customers and show limited
appeal to households with children, she said.
How the industry can partner with retailers
and food companies on meal kits
Along with creating another avenue to sell the protein, Sheehan said meal kits can highlight where their
ingredients come from and advertise the poultry brand.
Protein suppliers in the meal kit can promote properties
that consumers care about like environmental sustainability, local sourcing and health and nutrition benefits.
Chicken, she said, is already well recognized
by shoppers as a desirable light, healthy protein.
Producers should play a supporting role, either through
February 2018 ❙ www.WATTAgNet.com
Other retail trends
Diana Sheehan's presentation centered on
the changing consumer and what it means
for grocers. A large demographic and technological shift is powering a move toward
four main concepts:
■ Fresh and better
■ Retailers differentiating themselves
working directly with the retailers or developing their
own, independent product.
While retailer-developed meal kits are just getting
off the ground, retailers are open to and interested in
partnering with poultry producers and getting them into
innovation labs and test kitchens to create a product. The
next step will be working with other food and ingredients
companies to develop kits independently of the grocers.
The industry may not be there yet, she said, but a road
map exists. She said one of the first meal kits was developed by Peapod, an online grocery delivery service,
working with Italian pasta maker Barilla SpA. ■