View Poll Results: Meal kits?

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Thread: Meal kits--hit or shit?

  1. #1
    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    Default Meal kits--hit or shit?

    Meal kits, such as the ones from Blue Apron and Amazon, are becoming increasingly popular in the US, and the idea is slowly spreading across the rest of the Western world. Recently, "smart oven" designer Tovala began a major push to break into this market with their "keurig for food" concept. There is no doubt in my mind that this sector is about to explode, even in this age of rampant hipstery foodie-ism gone [organic non-GMO] bananas.

    It's not for us. We have a great deal of leisure time, enjoy cooking, can cook quickly when we need/want to and not break the bank doing it. The meal kits I've seen so far have not been appealing to me because they have struck me as being less convenient and less enjoyable while simultaneously being more expensive in terms of $$$ (obviously, time is money, but equally obviously, I'm not earning money every spare minute I have). I find the entire concept frustratingly restrictive even when the food is decent (eg. prepared dishes from our favourite local restaurants that just have to be chucked into the oven for a little while).

    But there's no denying that meal kits are going to be huge. I conducted an informal survey of my coworkers and found that around a third could see themselves using a meal kit service. Just under a third of my wife's colleagues already use services that deliver groceries with pre-selected ingredients (that can be used to make dishes from a pre-formed weekly dinner menu). The interest is there. For many people, meal kits can free up a lot of time and substantially increase QoL.

    How do you, personally, feel about meal kits?

    Have you tried them?

    Would you consider using them?

    How do you think they'd impact your life?
    “Humanity's greatest advances are not in its discoveries, but in how those discoveries are applied to reduce inequity.”
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  2. #2
    I never understood them. I don't consider myself as one with a great deal of leisure time, but even I can find time now to properly feed a family without much effort. And holy shit, the services as so ridiculously expensive. Greenchef is somewhere around $105 for 8 meals for 4 people after its promo period. Their 2 person plans end up more expensive than doing a 2 for $20 at a place like Applebees.
    "In a field where an overlooked bug could cost millions, you want people who will speak their minds, even if they’re sometimes obnoxious about it."

  3. #3
    All Worship Ragnarök Loki's Avatar
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    A) As OG says, they're expensive.
    B) Everyone I know who's tried them got bored of the food eventually.
    C) Most importantly, what if you're in the mood for food x the day these people give you food y?
    Hope is the denial of reality

  4. #4
    Unencrypted Wraith's Avatar
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    I've looked into them before after becoming aware of the fad. I thought it might be a good way to get decent meals on the cheap, and the idea of having everything pre-measured was nice - when I buy ingredients myself, there's inevitably an amount of wastage. But they're not cheap, they're actually significantly more expensive then buying the ingredients myself even counting the waste. Until they can at least get the price below what it costs me to buy what I need to make the same thing entirely from scratch, I'll have no interest.

  5. #5
    Senior Member GGT's Avatar
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    It's definitely a 'trending fad'. I think some people like that it's expensive, part of a new luxury category that's used to define (and show-off) one's success -- while also appealing to the other trend of cooking at home (with fresh ingredients instead of ordering take-out or dining out) as if that's some newfound value. I'm not sure I believe their claims that it helps support local food growers/producers, or reduces food waste, or that it's 'environmentally friendly'. There's still a lot of packaging and trucking involved, and most recipes use ingredients grown in other countries.

    I think it's great marketing, and Americans are the perfect target group for paying a premium to feel good about themselves. Coupled with the advent of TV cooking shows (food porn), traveling Foodies, and the Amazon effect, it was probably destined to happen. But since one of my sons works in the restaurant industry, I'd rather people eat dine out instead.

  6. #6
    Senior Member GGT's Avatar
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    Come to think of it....it's probably part of the larger attempt to convince the American home cook they need a 6 burner professional gas cooktop (with griddle and wok attachments) and 2 convection built-in wall ovens, just to make pancakes and scrambled eggs. Or a smart fridge that can tell them when the milk is expired. As if all of that will make them a better cook.

  7. #7
    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GGT View Post
    Come to think of it....it's probably part of the larger attempt to convince the American home cook they need a 6 burner professional gas cooktop (with griddle and wok attachments) and 2 convection built-in wall ovens, just to make pancakes and scrambled eggs. Or a smart fridge that can tell them when the milk is expired. As if all of that will make them a better cook.
    My impression has been that meal kits represent or support the opposite position, that you don't need much in the way of specialized equipment--or time, hard work or experience--to make tasty and diverse food at home. So I have to disagree with your analysis here.
    “Humanity's greatest advances are not in its discoveries, but in how those discoveries are applied to reduce inequity.”
    — Bill Gates

  8. #8
    Senior Member Flixy's Avatar
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    Yeah for me the thing is that i live super close to three supermarkets and even more small markets, so i really don't need expensive fresh vegetables. My mum tried one for a while but was disappointed with the diversity of the contents.
    Keep on keepin' the beat alive!

  9. #9
    Senior Member GGT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aimless View Post
    My impression has been that meal kits represent or support the opposite position, that you don't need much in the way of specialized equipment--or time, hard work or experience--to make tasty and diverse food at home. So I have to disagree with your analysis here.
    I'm supposing there's a "wannabe" factor that makes Americans buy, and over-pay, for recipes/tutorials that can be found for free on-line (or at most public libraries) PLUS the delivery of ingredients....when they don't live in a food desert. It's sadly ironic that people looking for "home cooking" haven't learned how to make a damn thing from their own family kitchen, and barely know how to boil an egg.

    It's just more Food Porn.

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