Is there an industry that Amazon hasn’t touched? From streaming to ebooks to drone delivery, Amazon has pushed dozens of industries forward into a new era. With Amazon’s recent acquisition of Whole Foods, now even the food service industry must prepare for major modernization.
Food service professionals around the globe would be wise to keep a close eye on Amazon as the changes they will be making in the traditional approach of today’s industry will be felt tenfold tomorrow. The acquisition of Whole Foods, along with Amazon Go and AmazonFresh programs, are examples providing key insights into the industry’s inevitable transformation. Let’s dig in!
The convenience of delivery that defines the Amazon experience has grabbed the attention of more than just retailers and vendors. Amazon has forever changed the expectations of consumers as well. Already offering free restaurant-delivery to Prime customers in seventeen cities via a fleet of crowdsourced drivers, in a few short years, dinners ordered through Amazon are more than likely to arrive by drone.
Still in the rollout stage, the Amazon Go service allows customers to bypass the cashier in favor of prepaid, chef-prepared meals waiting for them on the counter–a possible new standard for quick-bite eateries. But Amazon’s influence doesn’t end at eliminating checkout lines. Now supported in fifteen cities across the nation, AmazonFresh offers delivery and pickup of meal kits. With recipes and ingredients packaged together, customers simply place their order, then hasten into their aprons.
With their acquisition of Whole Foods, Amazon has revealed what’s next on the menu: food distribution. Currently, only 27% of restaurants order their supplies on the web. However, with the ease of one-touch ordering, that share will no doubt drastically expand. In fact, Amazon has already made one-touch ordering standard for more than 200 Prime products. In addition, their analytic and tried-and-true digital systems will almost certainly enable Amazon to set the pricing standards. And as the prices inevitably trend downward, past standards like GPO and Contract Management programs will likely be squeezed out.
Amazon is leading a revolution at nearly every level of the food service experience. Yet this ease and convenience comes with a major catch: trends, consumer demands, and local quirks must be closely tracked and accounted for. To avoid hemorrhaging business, operators must stay ahead of these trends, or be left behind.
One major food industry sector that can be forecasted and planned for, though, is the school year. Classes start soon and lunchboxes need to be filled. SunButter is a trend in sandwich spreads, offering a safe and nut-free alternative for kids in cafeterias that are allergy-conscious.
Keeping tabs on products like SunButter is key for surviving an industry undergoing major change. While Whole Foods is changing hands, many of their top products aren’t. A high-protein, natural product that parents love is the perfect place to begin your strategy for adapting to the Amazon effect.
Visit SunButter.com now to learn more and bring a trending product to your store shelves and kitchen table.