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The Hershey Co. has joined the meal kit delivery market via a new alliance with Chef’d. The partnership marks the launch of the dessert category for Los Angeles-based Chef’d, as well as the first time branded desserts have entered the online meal kit market. As an added bonus, consumers can order kits any time from HersheysKitchens.com, Scharffenberger.com and Chefd.com without paying a subscription or membership fees.
As the first branded dessert entrant in the meal kit market, “Hershey is committed to offering our beloved brands every place where people shop,” said Carrie Lathrop, manager, e-commerce and emerging channels for The Hershey Co., based in Hershey, Pa. “The rise of the meal kit market is undeniable – boxes provide unprecedented convenience while maintaining the engaging experience of home baking."
Through the partnership, online shoppers can access with just one click all of the portioned ingredients needed to create their favorite desserts. The collection of desserts includes recipes from Hershey’s Kitchens and Scharffen Berger, which will aim to provide consumers with “distinctly delicious experiences for all skill levels and taste preferences.” The Hershey’s Kitchens recipes will be targeted for everyday baking needs and creative desserts to share with family and friends, while the Scharffen Berger recipes, featuring the brand’s artisan line of chocolates, aim to elevate the dessert experience.
“Hershey is taking a leadership position as the first confection brand to sell dessert kits on our site, and we are thrilled to be working with them to get the kits to consumers nationally,” said Kyle Ransford, founder and CEO of Chef’d. “We think they are trendsetting and others are going to follow.”
Collaboration Adds 'Intriguing Wrinkle'
Meal kit delivery is big business, representing a $1.5 billion market, according to estimates in market research firm Packaged Facts' new Meal Kit Delivery Services in the U.S. report.
Looking ahead, Packaged Facts projects meal kit services will deliver on their promising momentum and grow into a multibillion-dollar market over the next five years. Such high expectations make it understandable why any food industry player would seriously consider joining what will likely only become a potentially lucrative – albeit an increasingly competitive –market, according to David Sprinkle, research director at Rockville, Md.-based Packaged Facts.
“The Hershey’s-Chef’d collaboration lends the meal kit market an intriguing wrinkle – that of brand partnership,” Sprinkle noted. “And the fact that this is a dessert-themed meal kit service distinguishes it from other companies that are focused more on providing people with convenient ways to cook full meals at home without the necessity of meal planning or grocery shopping. In business as it is in life, never underestimate the power of America’s sweet tooth and anything that makes satisfying our indulgent cravings more convenient. The question is no longer just ‘what’s for dinner,’ but also ‘what’s for dessert.’”