Prepared meal maker Snap Kitchen has announced a partnership with Whole Foods to sell ready-to-eat meals at six Whole Foods stores in Austin, Texas starting this week, according to a press release. Both companies operate their headquarters in Austin.
Snap Kitchen’s lineup at Whole Foods will include 35 meals and beverages, including options to meet dietary preferences such as vegan, keto, gluten-free and paleo. Shoppers can choose from breakfast, lunch and dinner selections such as quinoa chorizo breakfast tacos, creamy mushroom fusilli and chili-glazed Atlantic salmon.
- Snap Kitchen, which operates 33 retail stores in Texas and Philadelphia, prepares its meals daily. The meals are not frozen and are free from gluten, antibiotics, artificial flavors and preservatives and added hormones. The company also uses compostable containers with recyclable lids.
A partnership between Snap Kitchen and Whole Foods could prove to be synergistic. Tapping into Snap Kitchen’s meal preparation will alleviate pressure on Whole Foods’ kitchens and commissaries and give it access to a line of prepared meals from a company that’s proven its abilities on a large scale. Snap Kitchen will gain prime grocery store real estate and exposure to Whole Foods shoppers, many of whom could also become Snap Kitchen customers outside the store.
The two companies also share a commitment to healthy ingredients, clean labels and specialty diets. This makes it easy for Whole Foods to bring the products to market, knowing it won’t have to further vet the quality of the Snap Kitchen meals they put on store shelves. A Whole Foods spokesperson said in a statement that the company is excited to offer a new, healthy line of ready-to-eat meals that meet its quality standards.
Whole Foods stocks a selection of its own grab-and-go foods, but the retailer is better known for its hot food bar, salad bar and made-to-order options. The grocer has also tested various meal kit lines in stores, typically launching in just a few stores at a time. Amazon meal kits began appearing in select Whole Foods stores in the western U.S. earlier this year, and the company added them to stores on the East Coast in June. Other meal kit brands to appear at Whole Foods includes Ayesha Curry’s new line and Salted, a startup that piloted meal kit sales with Whole Foods in 2017.
Meal kits have rolled out to grocers across the country. But as companies like Blue Apron struggle to get shoppers excited about the traditional cook-by-numbers model, retailers and kit makers have shifted their focus to ready-to-heat and ready-to-eat options. Kroger-owned Home Chef recently came out with oven-ready, heat-and-eat and lunch meal kits.
In addition to operating its own retail storefronts, Snap Kitchen sells meals online. The company, which was founded in 2010, recently expanded online meal delivery to 15 cities across the U.S., and also offers a subscription meal plan that’s available for delivery or pickup.