While there’s understandably a lot of buzz and excitement around meal kit delivery services, this appears to be still be a nascent industry, though there’s some significant discrepancy in estimates.
Overall adoption by US consumers rests at around 5%, according to the NPD Group.
Close to 1 in 5 (17%) of US consumers receive meal kit delivery services, though, reports Packaged Facts.
For its part, Morning Consult survey data indicates that 19% of US adults have tried a home delivery meal kit service, of whom close to 4 in 10 are current subscribers. (That’s 7% in total.)
What seems clear from Packaged Facts and Hitwise data is that meal kit users are more likely to be young, highly educated, high-income, and urban.
Also of note with Amazon’s entry into this space is that 52% of online grocery shoppers are Amazon Prime members, per The NPD Group.
The meal kit delivery service market is currently worth around $5 billion, according to Packaged Facts estimates.
That’s a huge increase from Packaged Facts’ estimate last year, which pegged the market at a $1.5 billion value.
Percent of Meal Kits Bought on Subscription
Not surprisingly, the meal kit market is heavily dependent on subscriptions. Deep inside a recent Nielsen report [download page] we unearthed this nugget:
84% of online meal kit buyers purchase the services via subscription.
That’s by far the highest figure of the various FMCG categories tracked, including another blossoming subscription industry, Men’s Shave Care (49% buying on subscription).
Visits to Food Subscription Sites
We turned to Hitwise, which provided data on visits to meal kit subscription sites.
Total visits to food subscription boxes reached 11.2 million in June, up 26% year-over-year, according to the Hitwise data.
Interestingly, visits have been on a downward trend since March. Senior analyst John Fetto ascribes this in part to:
- A record high for visits in January, after which consumers tok a break or churned; and
- A natural decline as people forget about their New Years’ resolutions to cook more and eat more healthily, as well as an increase in fresh ingredients available during the Summer months.
Top 5 Food Subscription Sites
It will be interesting to see how this changes now that Amazon has entered the market (we can think of one way!), but Hitwise data indicates that the top 5 sites in terms of visits as of June are:
- Blue Apron (3.97 million visits);
- Hello Fresh (2.22 million);
- Home Chef (1.93 million);
- Plated (404,000); and
- Sunbasket (305,000).
Worth noting is that those top 5 sites accounted for almost 79% of total visits to food subscription box sites in June.