Meal kit delivery is a constant in the news. Most recently, Blue Apron launched its public offering and it wasn’t pretty.

Despite the negative trading, the meal kit delivery industry is a hot trend that has made some in the restaurant industry nervous. One thing is for sure: meal kits remain popular.

Here are 6 stats and facts restaurateurs should know about the meal kit trend.

Meal kit delivery services generated close to $1.5 billion in sales in 2016. (Source)

Given how young the meal kit industry is, that’s a lot of sales. There’s clearly an appetite for food to make at home.

Meal kit startups have raised more than $650 million in venture capital. (Source)

The venture capital industry is bullish on the concept of sending ingredients to homes, expecting big returns in convenience.

Only 5% of U.S. consumers have tried meal kit services. (Source)

Even with bullish investors and planned public offerings, meal kits are not a habit with most customers. There’s still plenty of room to grow.

male cooks preparing sushi in the restaurant kitchen

Meal kits are the new vogue. What does that mean for your guests?

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2.2% of meal kit customers spend less at restaurants. (Source)

There are some signs that meal kit services are eating into restaurant margins. A small percentage spend less at restaurants. But restaurant owners shouldn’t despair…

49% of consumers would buy a meal kit from their favorite restaurant. (Source)

Restaurants have opportunity to get in the game. According to the National Restaurant Association, nearly half of consumers say they’d buy a meal kit from their favorite restaurant if it were offered.

47% of food deliveries from restaurants are still ordered by phone. (Source)

Morgan Stanley found that of food deliveries, most are still placed by phone. But that share is dropping rapidly (down 3% year over year). Online food delivery services are quickly becoming a mainstay for restaurants and their guests.

Meal kits aren’t going to disappear. But restaurants don’t need to feel left out. As you think about your guests ordering their own ingredients for delivery, you can capture more sales in the restaurant by revamping your menu. Check out this free guide on the psychology of menu design for tips.

Written by

Jesse Noyes is Senior Director of Marketing for Upserve. In past lives he’s been a dishwasher and then journalist for the Boston Herald and Boston Business Journal. He’s a sucker for ramen.

  • iadn

    Sunbasket is another player in this space – locally sourced ingredients and great flexibility in choosing what you’d like delivered.