- Blue Apron announced last week a new partnership with Panasonic that lets customers prepare recipes using the electronic company's new multi-purpose oven.
- The meal kit maker has made 12 two-serving meals meant to be prepared in Panasonic’s four-in-one multi-oven, which can be used as a convection bake oven, air fryer, inverter microwave and flash broiler.
- Blue Apron is looking to boost its profile and give consumers more options for quick meal prep as the eat-at-home trend sparked by the pandemic continues.
Blue Apron's latest partnership adds “faster and easier” meals to its lineup, John Adler, Blue Apron’s vice president of culinary, said in the announcement.
Blue Apron and other meal delivery companies, like Kroger-owned Home Chef, have expanded their selections of ready-to-eat options. Last summer, Blue Apron launched its Heat & Eat offerings of single-serving meals that can be ready in five minutes.
In the announcement, the meal kit maker noted that combination cooking “can achieve the textures and flavors a traditional microwave may not be able to achieve.” Users can crisp prosciutto using the air fryer feature and roast vegetables using the convection oven setting, the release noted. Shoppers can alter how many recipes and servings they want weekly.
"Our customers continue to ask us for convenience in the kitchen, without sacrificing great quality and fresh ingredients,” Adler said.
The multi-oven is available on Blue Apron’s website for $529.95, which includes the incentive of $120 off five meal boxes, with one shipping for free. The companies said they plan to promote the partnership throughout the year.
Panasonic is the latest partner for Blue Apron as it goes up against several meal kit and prepared meals rivals. In December, the company announced plans for a co-branded credit card with personal finance company Aspiration and introduced two- and four-serving recipes, along with meal kit ordering, available with Amazon Alexa.
Blue Apron has struggled financially during the pandemic, but executives have said the company is betting on sustained at-home eating.
Coresight Research predicted last year that the meal kit market in the U.S. would see a sharp decline in its growth rate in 2021 and found HelloFresh and Sunbasket combined accounted for more than half of the U.S. meal kit market in 2020, while Blue Apron’s share was 8%. Coresight predicts meal kit sales will hit $7.7 billion this year.