A Trillion Dollar Industry…
The food industry is never going away. Biologically we will always need to eat. It’s estimated that this industry has a $993 billion dollar GDP. That’s basically 1 trillion dollars! It’s no surprise then all the heightened activity we’re seeing in this space. It was just announced last week that Albertsons bought meal prep company, Plated. This followed the recently acquired Whole Foods by Amazon for $14 billion dollars, confirming the impending waterfall of disruption in the food industry. In our free economy the customer still wins and we’re seeing the innovation being catered towards our best experience and satisfaction.
Now our culture doesn’t just love to eat, but we LOVE to eat. We’ve got our Chef’s Table, Tastemade, and Hell’s Kitchen. We’ve got our obesity epidemic and our vegan epidemic as well. We’ve got endless diets and a restaurant on every street corner. When it comes to home cooking however, we’ve got some work to do. Our society is increasingly focused on consumer experience and convenience, leading brick and mortar grocers to figure out how to stay ahead.
Innovation is coming in droves. We’ve got lab grown food, robots replacing human jobs, transformative branding, urban farming and many others for almost every part of the process. One recent disruption can be found in the food-prep space with companies like the aforementioned Plated, or Territory Foods, Sun Basket, Blue Apron and Hello Fresh. These companies build on the successes of Instacart & Amazon Fresh by not just delivering the food to you, but delivering recipes and pre-made portions ready to be put on the stove or thrown into the microwave. It’s also expected that Amazon will likely abolish the need for a check out line all together in order to bolster up their Amazon Go program, where customers can go in, pick out their food and walk out with what they need.
Ultimately, you are what you eat. Food is the fuel for our human engine and what we eat often determines how we feel and preserves us from getting illnesses. The millennial generation especially is increasingly concerned with what we eat. Ever seen What The Health? It will be interesting to see how these foods continue to feed us and how the industry continues to evolve. Will we continue to trust artificial and processed foods? Or move towards good, fresh, “whole foods” and more efficiency with the types of food we’re eating, not just the process in which we buy and consume them.