Purple Carrot, best known for its plant-based meal kit subscription service, is getting into the retail game. The company today announced the launch of a line of frozen, single-serve meals that are now available at Whole Foods stores in the U.S.
Like the rest of Purple Carrot’s offerings, the meals are 100 percent plant based and developed in partnership with CPG company Conagra Brands, which owns Health Choice, Earth Balance, and Gardein, among other names.
These frozen meals will be available for purchase at “nearly all” Whole Foods stores in the U.S. this week for $5.29 each, according to the company press release.
The move to retail is a first for Massachusetts-based Purple Carrot. It has long been known for its subscription-based meal kit company, which specializes in plant-forward, vegan-friendly meal kits. The company was acquired by Tokyo, Japan-based Oisix ra daichi Inc. in 2019.
Purple Carrot’s launch in physical retail outlets comes at a time when more people are ordering their groceries online thanks to the pandemic. And recent research suggests the pandemic is also causing something of a resurgence in the previously struggling meal kit sector. Finally, COVID-19 may be ushering a new trend into the food world: frozen food as medicine. Given Purple Carrot’s plant-forward, healthy menu, the new line of products is a prime contender for this category.
One might wonder why Purple Carrot is focusing on physical retail stores right now. But despite what the headlines would have us believe, not everyone is avoiding the brick-and-mortar grocery store. Presumably online shoppers will still be able to purchase Purple Carrot’s frozen meals along with any other item they throw in their virtual cart. And with more people working from home, these single-serving meals could easily become a regular staple of someone’s freezer, and a quick way to grab a healthy bite in the middle of the workday.