- Home Chef, the Kroger-owned meal kit company and prepared foods brand, has promoted Chief Product Officer Erik Jensen to president, according to a news release. He will report to company CEO and founder Pat Vihtelic.
- Home Chef also announced the appointment of Latasha Kempadoo, who formerly worked for XPO Logistics, as chief people officer. David McCoy, senior director of finance since 2020, has been promoted to vice president of finance.
- The company said the new appointments are “intended to strengthen plans for growth and accelerate innovation.” Home Chef’s brand sales increased 118% in 2020, and the company delivers 3.5 million meal kits per month.
Jensen joined Home Chef in 2015 as director of culinary strategy and in 2017 was named the company’s chief product officer. Tuesday’s announcement noted he has played a key role in growing Home Chef’s business at Kroger, with offerings now available in more than 2,100 stores.
Vihtelic, the company’s CEO and founder, will support Jensen in his role while also focusing on long-term strategy “to align with Kroger’s ambitious e-commerce growth goals,” according to the announcement.
Kempadoo, the company’s new people officer, has more than 20 years of experience working in human resources, including at companies like Colgate-Palmolive and Henkel Corporation. Meanwhile, McCoy came to Home Chef in 2018 after spending more than seven years in financial planning with home retailer Crate & Barrel.
Since Kroger acquired it in 2018, Home Chef has evolved from purely a meal kit company to include numerous prepared foods like packaged mashed potatoes, mac and cheese, smoked ribs and soups. This diversification has helped limit its exposure to the volatile meal kit market, though consumer demand increased dramatically during the pandemic.
As Kroger pushes ahead with its new automated e-commerce fulfillment centers and attempts to hold onto shoppers’ mealtime spending, Home Chef will continue to evolve as a key asset for the grocer, the announcement said.
"Home Chef is a growing and thriving business for Kroger, and we believe having strong talent at the helm will enable us to continue that success and deliver even more value to our customers," Dan De La Rosa, Kroger's group vice president of fresh merchandising, said in a statement.