Health and time, two concepts that cannot exist without each other. Hippocrates famously stated, “Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food”, highlighting the importance of food to keep us healthy.
As health gives us a greater quantity and quality of time, we need to dedicate time to it. However, sometimes making these two elements compatible becomes mission impossible in our daily lives.
The food industry is a clear example of this challenge. We are increasingly absorbed with our professional commitments, and we tend to neglect our meals. The traditional slow-cooked meals of our grandparents are being replaced by quicker, less elaborate and less healthy meals. The interest of younger generations in cooking is becoming increasingly scarce.
Too much time invested
Cooking our own recipes requires time, and not only in the kitchen. Beforehand, it is necessary to plan what we want to eat in our head, draw up a list and go to the supermarket. For someone who has to spend most of the day in an office, a hospital or a library, that’s a lot of time.
In this context, the meal kit industry has gained strength in recent years. These companies offer a service that includes the design of recipes and the delivery of the ingredients needed to the homes of consumers. In this way, users only have to focus on the main task: cooking. A kitchen DIY (do it yourself), easily called “Cook It Yourself”.
Customized meal kits
Meal kit services range from the delivery of ingredients for a simple dinner to the elaboration of a weekly weight loss plan, containing daily recipes and periodic deliveries of the necessary ingredients. Some companies in the sector also offer the possibility of choosing the number of servings. In other words, the beneficiary of the plan can range from a single person to an entire family. Another advantage of this service would be the possibility of choosing a number of weekly recipes, according to whether you want to follow the plan for the whole week or just a few days. The economy of scale plays an important role: the higher the number of diners and weekly recipes, the lower the price of each portion.
Meal kit services were born in Sweden in 2007, and soon expanded to northern Europe and the United States, where they now have a strong market presence. In the last five years, Spain has joined this trend thanks to the pioneering startup FoodintheBox. This company started sending ingredients to Spanish households in 2015. Among its co-founders is Fabián León, finalist of the first edition of the famous culinary program Masterchef.
The consumer first
The company, focused on healthy food, offers consumers three plans to suit their preferences and needs: vegan, balanced or low-carbohydrate. Once the plan is chosen, the consumer has access to different recipes from which they can choose the ones they are most interested in. After selecting the recipes for the week, the ingredients are sent to the consumer. In addition, this method avoids food wastage, since only the necessary quantities are sent to the user, an ESG initiative that Fellow Funders is very passionate about.
The price of each portion ranges between four and six euros, depending on the number of diners and weekly recipes. For example, a plan of five portions for one person would cost 30 euros, whereas for a family of five people would be around 105 euros.
A booming sector
The number of these type of companies in Spain has recently increased. Home confinement and the rise of concepts such as real fooding, is causing many people to return to the old habits of cooking and eating at home, encouraging the expansion of this market.
What is more, these companies are not only betting on healthy food but also on environmental sustainability in their shipments. Something that will attract the interest of younger generations, who are increasingly interested in health and the environment. For this reason, we are likely to see a model in the coming years that combines the tradition of cooking at home with the modernity of the digital world: the Cook It Yourself model.