Whole Foods adds take out ready-made food ordering to app

Dive brief:

  • Whole Foods Market has added a feature to its mobile app to allow people to place takeout orders for prepared foods, a company spokesperson wrote in an email.
  • The characteristic, which is available for iOS users in select stores, allows customers to order delivery or pickup of items such as hot pizzas, sandwiches, salads, starters, sushi, soups and drinks. The feature also allows people to personalize items, the grocer said. on his website.
  • The new functionality follows recent developments in deli and ready meal orders, including Instacart recent acquisition of a software company Food storm.

Dive overview:

With the new feature, Whole Foods seeks to reduce the time people spend waiting for ready-made food orders in stores.

Whole Foods highlighted how the new feature aims to save buyers time. Instead of having to go to the ready-meals department to place their orders and wait for them to be ready, they can do other things, like shopping in the rest of the store. For people who place delivery orders, they can add these lunch and dinner items to their digital baskets.

It could also help spur grocery delivery orders, especially following the outcry over Whole Foods’ newly added $ 9.95 service charge on grocery delivery orders nationwide. .

Grocers are increasingly turning to ready meals and take-out selection and are looking to make them available online. The Food Industry Association said in a recent report that grocers can strengthen their deli aisle and prepared foods to gain a competitive advantage, noting that 39% of consumers view retail food as a substitute for home-cooked meals and at the restaurant.

Other grocers like Shoprite and Schnucks have launched pre-order deli tools in recent years. Last year, Publix rolled out a fresh meal pickup and delivery platform with Instacart that included the popular Grocer’s Pub Sub.

Earlier this month, Instacart said it has acquired catering software company FoodStorm, which manages end-to-end ordering and catering services and will integrate with the e-commerce company’s enterprise grocery solutions. Instacart said the acquisition followed requests from its grocery partners to facilitate the management of orders of prepared foods, personalized items and catering.

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