Baby Meal Kits Might Be A Winner

The Lempert Report
April 13, 2017

A lot of people, us included, are just waiting for the delivery meal kit business to implode and shift to pick up at supermarkets.

There is one meal kit solution that may have legs. Little legs. Like in baby legs.

Regina Reale’s new delivery service, Nurturie, with offerings from chef Katy Sparks are designed for infants and young kids and offers a wide assortment of fresh, organic dishes — like vegetable fried rice with tofu; mac and cheese made with cauliflower purée; my favorite - Local Wild Fish Sticks with a Lemon-Caper Tartar Sauce with chef's fresh market fish selection, buttered peas and mushrooms and zucchini-buckwheat pancakes — all ready for the microwave. Right now distribution is limited to the upper east side in New York City and deliveries are just Wednesdays and Sundays. Meals have a three-day shelf life and are priced from $1.79 to $9.95. 

Thistle, a startup specializing in delivery of prepared foods is launching Thistle Baby meal kits. The founders, a husband and wife team decided to launch this new service because when they became parents they felt that when buying  things at the grocery store they felt like they were not up to their quality standards all the time. They told TechCrunch that even a lot of the healthier options are over-processed, pureed, with a watery consistency. They also don’t taste like real fruits or veggies. And you’re left wondering how long this has been on the shelf and in what kind of conditions. 

"Thistle Baby was designed to give parents the health and taste benefits of homemade, organic and gluten-free baby food, as well as the feeling of pride that comes from making meals for their little ones. Their goal is to take 80% of the hassle out of making the food at home. When you steam, puree and add spices on your own, you start to really learn your baby’s preferences, while instilling healthy eating habits as early as possible.”  

The Thistle Baby meal kit consists of vacuum-sealed bags of apportioned, organic ingredients, flash-frozen to preserve flavor. The company says its prices work out to $2 per toddler or infant meal.   

The trend is growing – with Lily & Bella in Dallas delivers organic ingredients and recipes to make baby food at home; Los Angeles-based Caer offers low-sugar organic, prepared baby foods for delivery; and NurtureLife in Chicago offers ready-to-eat meals tailored to kids’ developmental stage and food preferences.

Might be time for your supermarket to get into the baby meal kit biz.