- Kroger has entered an exclusive partnership with media company Meredith Corporation and Lifetime Brands to carry a line of kitchen products under the Allrecipes trademark, according to a press release.
- The line, which includes kitchen tools, bakeware, cutlery products, food prep and storage containers, is designed with innovative features like cutting guides in baking pans and grips to prevent cutting boards from slipping.
- More than 80 products are now available at Kroger stores. In-store displays will feature codes that customers can scan for recipe ideas and instructions on where to find the right tools and ingredients within the store.
With the consumer trend toward opting to stay in and cook or order meals to their homes rather than dining out, the kitchenware section of the store could be an in-store sales driver for Kroger.
More than three-quarters of consumers surveyed in online grocer Peapod's forecasting survey said they'd rather eat a home-cooked meal than eat out. Those preferences appear to translate to increasing kitchenware sales. According to Wintergreen Research, the global kitchenware market is expected to rise to $4.6 billion by 2024 from $2.1 billion in 2017. A report from IBIS World said this section of the store has seen moderate gains over the past five years, mostly due to growth in the housing market.
The category's growth opens up more opportunities for grocers to invest in this once forgotten section of the store. Partnerships like Kroger and Meredith's, which includes well-known kitchenware company Lifetime brands, provides a level of assurance to customers shopping for the best products. It's also convenient for customers to be able to buy cookware during their grocery shopping rather than make a separate trip.
If grocers plan to invest in this department, they'll have tough competition to face from industry veterans like Williams-Sonoma and other retailers who focus specifically on home goods. According to IBIS World, Williams-Sonoma holds the largest market share in the kitchen and cookware industry.
The inclusion of smart codes in the section will further connect shoppers to the store through shoppable recipes. This is a key strategy to build bigger baskets and offer a direct path to purchase as customers look to get the ingredients they need for a specific meal. Meredith has taken the idea a step further, helping shoppers outfit their kitchens with the right tools as well as necessary ingredients.