Delivery services aren’t just for David Chang and Martha Stewart. While food delivery investment has cooled this year (see chart) as venture capitalists question the economics of these capital intensive businesses, that hasn’t stopped enterprising startups from heading to crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter to fund a unique take on food delivery.
Here are seven companies trying to become the next Blue Apron via crowdfunding campaigns:
Every three months Bierbox sends you the ingredients you need for a new recipe: think liquid or dry malt extract, hops, and yeast, as well as detailed instructions to make these homebrew-lab-tested recipes. Pair it with the Zymatic and you’re a 21st century kind of home brewer.
Forget your local butcher or meat CSA. Grass Cow wants to deliver grass-fed beef, grass-fed bison, and wild hog to your doorstep. Right now it looks like these are onetime deliveries, which on the surface seems like they are using the same business model as Omaha Steaks. However, the quality is much better, and for people in areas without access to grass-fed meats, this could be a game changer.
Are you an “aspiring entertainer” (read: millennial) who wants to throw a fancy hipster supper club (read: dinner party) but hates planning (read: is lazy)? The Caramelized Supper Club might be for you. Every other month it delivers décor and nonperishable items along with recipes, grocery lists, and wine pairings. No one will ever suspect your dinner party came out of a box.
Don’t worry about growing basil or rosemary on your porch anymore, because Herbly will deliver whatever you need. The startup partners with small-scale farmers to deliver those herbs on a monthly basis. Choose from everything from basil to stevia to chocolate mint “and indulge” with (non-medical) herbs, as their Kickstarter page says.
Let’s be clear. SaloonBox is basically a box of mixers, delivered to your door. You have to add the alcohol. That said, they provide crafted recipes for fun drinks like mulled cider and even the ubiquitous Moscow Mule. The new mini line includes enough for four to six servings of one cocktail, so to get through the holidays, you might need, oh, about 10 of these.
If you live in the U.K., Black Market Beer will send you a case of beer from a craft microbrewery each month. We’re talking seriously small microbreweries too: The goal seems to be as much to help those folks stay in business as expose you to the great beers they’re making.
No, unfortunately, this is not a service that delivers adorable dogs to your door. But it is a service that delivers treats for your dog to your door. Each kit includes three to four types of healthy treats with real meat, chews, toys, and functional accessories. For my super anxious shih tzu, that functional accessory would probably be a Thunder Shirt.
Clearly not all of these projects will make it to the funded stage, but the high level of interest in delivery services confirms that it’s an area poised for growth. Over the next few years the space will become more and more crowded, until the few who have mastered their business model win out over the weaker offerings and the rest move on to the newest trend.