There is little doubt that you have at least heard of the company known as HelloFresh. After all, there are all kinds of commercials on that advertise the company all the time. Even if you don’t really watch all that much television, you’ve probably still seen them because they are on so much. That being said, you might be wondering whether or not this is something that would be right for you and your family. The idea of a service that brings you everything you need to make a fresh meal seems appealing enough, especially when you consider the fact that it means you won’t be forced to run to the grocery store every time you turn around. However, there seem to be cracks in the armor surrounding this company. If you want to know more, all you need to do is check out the list below, complete with twenty things that you may not already know.
1. The company isn’t based in the United States
This is a company that is almost constantly advertised in the United States but that doesn’t necessarily mean that the company itself is based in the same country. As a matter of fact, the company is actually based in Germany, Berlin to be exact. That certainly doesn’t stop them from having a rather dramatic impact on clients in several countries, even if only for a short time.
2. Despite that fact, it’s the largest company of its type in the U.S.
Even though the company is not based in the United States, there is no doubt that they are the largest company of this particular type in the country. That probably has a lot to do with the fact that they jumped on this bandwagon before almost anyone else. More will be discussed on that in a later paragraph, but for now, the thing you should probably know is that they were first on the scene so they are still remembered more frequently than just about anybody else.
3. You might even say they are a global company
They have operations in a number of different countries, including Germany, the United Kingdom, Australia, the United States, and Canada. While this certainly doesn’t encompass every part of the world, it does cover a lot of it. It’s also rather interesting to think that the same company that delivers your meal kit in the United States is doing something similar somewhere in Australia. Of course, the company changes things up a bit so that they are delivering meals based on the diets of those living in a particular country.
4. The company is still relatively new
It seems like the company has been around for a long time but in reality, they are still somewhat new. The company got its initial start in 2011 but it didn’t actually start delivering anything until the next year. That means that they have only been doing business for about six or seven years, give or take a few months.
5. It took about five years for the company to get its feet under it
The company actually struggled for quite some time when it came to getting to a point where it could stand on its own two feet. They struggled a great deal for the first five years that they were in business. That’s a little disconcerting when you stop and think about it. That means that it was only about a year or so ago when the company finally started making a little more money than they had been for the first five years. As far as many people are concerned, this is something that is worth worrying about.
6. So far, they have purchased three other meal kit companies
Despite the fact that the company has been struggling financially, they still ended up buying companies that they considered worthy of competing against them. To date, they have purchased three of them, most of them before they even had the chance to really get off the ground. For some, this was seen as a brilliant move. For others, it was seen as a less than clever move, especially for a company that was already struggling with its own financial prowess.
7. It’s fairly safe to say that they more or less paved the way for meal kit services
As previously mentioned, they were one of the first corporations of this type that ever came along. It didn’t take very long for other companies to follow suit. Before you could scarcely even blink an eye, there were all kinds of these meal kit delivery companies and they were all competing with each other in order to see who was finally going to come out on top. In a matter of only a few months, the market was completely saturated. This contributed in part to the company’s struggle to make enough money. They were popular, but they weren’t popular enough to deal with all of the other companies that were in direct competition with them.
8. The company’s developers delivered the very first meals themselves
When the company was just getting off the ground, two of the owners actually delivered those meals themselves. Of course, they only did this for the first ten people who purchased a subscription and after that , the kits were mailed to those who ordered them. However, the idea with delivering those first ten kits was all about creating positive publicity and that is exactly what it did. People still remember it to this very day.
9. Each meal is designed to be completed from start to finish in less than an hour
One of the things that makes this service appealing to people is the fact that all of the meals are designed to be prepared in a fairly short amount of time. For the most part, these meals can be made from start to finish in far less than an hour. More often than not, you can make them in about thirty to forty minutes.
10. All of the ingredients needed to make the meal are included in the kit, including seasoning
This is really the thing that gets the attention of most people. It’s been mentioned once but it’s important enough to be worth mentioning again. You don’t have to go to the store in order to get the ingredients you need to make the meal. People are so busy these days that they scarcely have time to go to the store. For some, it can become a real problem. When you have one of these services, everything you need is delivered directly to your door. It shaves a significant amount of time off of your schedule and it makes it much easier to prepare meals without spending your entire night in the kitchen.
11. Right now, they have 15 different meals on their plan
Some people think that they can order just about anything they want from this service but in reality, there are only fifteen meal plans that are available. That’s enough to change up your cooking habits a little, but it probably won’t get the job done if you plan on using the service every single day of the week.
12. The company provides about two or three meals each week
Ideally, the idea is for the company to provide each customer with two or three meals on a weekly basis. That won’t get you something different to eat each and every night but it will give you the chance to shake things up a little and make sure that at least on your busiest nights of the week, you can prepare something that isn’t takeout or a TV dinner, and you can do it quickly.
13. Customers can expect to pay a little more than $50 per week
For the most part, those two or three meals that you’re getting every week will cost you somewhere in the neighborhood of $60 or even $70 per week. Depending on how much you would typically spend at the grocery store in order to prepare that same number of meals, you may be able to justify the cost without even batting an eye. However, others who watch their budget more closely are likely to balk at the idea of spending that much money on the service every week, especially when you consider the fact that it doesn’t even cover the majority of the week.
14. They also have a wine list
They took note from another company of a similar nature, Blue Apron, and developed a wine list that can be paired with each of the meals that are provided by the company. In short, they watched this type of service become a popular item for Blue Apron, so they decided that they should follow suit.
15. However, that list has to be purchased separately
If you actually want to take advantage of the list, you will have to subscribe to not only HelloFresh, but also to their wine list service. That means added costs, but again you have to compare the cost associated with using the service versus buying wine from the local store.
16. There are special meal kits that can be made quickly but they’re not available in the U.S.
These kits are known as rush kits or quick kits and they can be prepared in about twenty minutes. They are not available in the United States but they are wildly popular in some of the other countries where the company is active, mainly in places like Australia.
17. Only about half of the people who initially subscribe stay for more than one order
Despite all of the things that should make HelloFresh the company that can’t be beaten, there seems to be a fundamental issue. Out of all of the people who initially subscribe to the service, roughly one half of them leave after that first week. This suggests that there might be a problem with the quality of the food, the way it’s delivered, or something similar. At any rate fifty percent is a pretty high attrition rate and it may mean that something more significant is going on just beneath the service.
18. The company has a number of issues with keeping customers for any length of time
If you think that losing fifty percent of their customers is a bit disturbing, you’re certainly not alone. However, that almost seems like good news when you hear the statistics for customers who have been with the company for a number of months. As it turns out, the company only keeps about ten percent of the customers that it signs up for more than six months. That’s right, about ninety percent of the company’s customers leave sometime within that six month time frame.
19. Many people feel that the company doesn’t offer enough variety
One of the reasons that people have commented on for leaving is the fact that according to many customers, there just isn’t enough variety to go around. Fifteen different meals seems like a lot until you stop and think about the fact that is you are eating three of their meals every week, you’ll have to circulate through every single meal the company offers in order to stretch that out for a little more than a month without having to repeat meals all the time. If you consider the possibility that you may not like all of the options that are available, you have even less time before things start getting repetitive.
20. They have also complained about the way the food is delivered
Some customers have also taken issue with the way the food is packaged. There are two potential issues here. One is that the packaging system used by the company is wasteful, causing a problem for those who are conscientious about protecting the health of the environment. The second issue is that all that extra packaging costs money, and those costs are passed on to the customer. Many feel that the service could be obtained for much less if it weren't for all of those unnecessary costs.
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Written by Garrett Parker
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