There’s a new meal-kit delivery service on the Canadian food scene.
Vancouver-based Fuud has launched its ready-to-cook meal kit brand in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland. The company focuses on fresh, seasonal and local ingredients, with recipes from local chefs.
Co-founder Thomas Buchan told Canadian Grocer‘s sister publication Marketing he got the idea on a trip to New Zealand last October, where he noticed a lot of people were using a meal-kit subscription service called My Food Bag. Subscription services like My Food Bag deliver pre-portioned ingredients and recipes right to people’s homes.
“I just thought, ‘what a great idea’ and it’s something I had casually chatted with parents about here,” said Buchan, a filmmaker by trade and former waiter. “I came back and started chatting with some friends. Most of us have kids and we’re all crazy busy living on the West Coast and we thought ‘let’s give it a shot.’”
Getting meals by mail is a rising trend globally. According to Chicago-based research firm Technomic, the global meal-kit market, which includes companies such as HelloFresh, BlueApron and Plated, topped US$1 billion in 2015, and is projected to reach US$10 billion by 2020.
This past June, Berlin-based Hello Fresh, which operates in nine global markets, brought its meal-kit subscription service to Canada. The company is initially focusing on Ontario, but plans to expand nationally. Meanwhile, Toronto-based Chefs Plate expanded its meal-kit service outside of Ontario to B.C., Alberta and Manitoba.
Fuud is aiming to set itself apart from the competition by focusing on local chefs and farmers. “In our research, we found that demand for local food is on the rise, but farmers are actually on the decline,” said Buchan. “So, we’ve made it a focal point of our business to help and support local farmers as much as possible and to promote them and tell their stories through food and through our business.”
“We’re just trying to make a West Coast incarnation of this business model, which seems to be extremely successful everywhere else on the planet,” he added.
Buchan said Fuud is developing an online marketplace “where people can order more from our farmers and vendors and hopefully support them even more.” He expects it to launch in six months.
The target market for Fuud includes parents with young kids, busy professionals and empty nesters—“people who grew up knowing what it was to have whole foods on the table and can relate to trying to bring people back to the dinner table and connecting over food,” said Buchan.
Fuud tapped Vancouver-based Will to create the brand identity, including delivery boxes, recipe cards, logo, brand website www.fuud.ca and marketing materials.
“They helped us find a unique value system which was aligned with the founders’ values, because we are so family-focused and we want to nurture connections with the farmers, with each other and with food,” said Buchan.