- Home Chef has partnered with food service provider Aramark to offer meal kits as part of university meal plans, according to a company press release.
- The meal kits will make their debut on 25 campuses this fall and will be delivered directly to participating students' doorsteps.
- Arizona State University is among the schools adding meal kits. There, students can purchase a Home Chef Dining Plan that includes a $120 credit for meals, which the service delivers to an address designated by the student, according to the school website.
As meal kit companies try to differentiate themselves, Home Chef is betting on busy college students. With their class schedules and late-night study sessions, many have little time to grocery shop or meal prep, and kits can fill a need for those who still want to cook for themselves.
According to a Packaged Facts report, Generation Z is more health-conscious than previous generations but still looks for convenient options to fit busy schedules. The study found that members of Gen Z are 10% more likely to purchase meal kits than millennials. They also show an interest in diverse and international cuisines. The Hartman Group found that 53% enjoy cooking and 71% would like to learn how to cook more.
In collaborating with a university food service provider, Home Chef can establish a relationship with the youngest set of adult consumers, who could then turn into customers long-term. The company also gains exposure with parents who are often choosing meal plans for their kids.
Home Chef has been testing new in-store offerings with Kroger, and recently moved its West Coast production facility to a 200,000 square-foot space in San Bernardino, California, which is expected to nearly triple the size of its operations.
Sean Butler, managing director at LIDD and former senior director of retail with Chef’d, wrote on Linkedin that the partnership between Aramark and Home Chef demonstrates the blurring lines between retail, foodservice and delivery. This trend is also visible in grocery stores that are including more restaurants and grocerants, larger prepared food sections and in-store meal kits.