Blue Apron was once the rising star of the meal kit industry, beating out competitors like Plated, Sun Basket and HelloFresh. However, just like many trends, meal kits have been slowly falling out of the limelight and Blue Apron is trying everything it can stay relevant. In an effort to appeal to the coveted millennial demographic, the company has been promoting their sustainability initiatives along with announcing upcoming sustainability goals.
On Friday, the company highlighted their current efforts to improve animal welfare throughout their supply chain and announced new sustainability initiatives that they will be implementing. This comes after the organization received the Good Chicken Award at the 2018 Good Farm Animal Welfare Awards hosted by Compassion in World Farming, which is an international farm animal welfare organization.
“We believe that a critical component of any successful food company is the responsibility – to our customers, suppliers, and the industry at large – to ensure the health and well-being of animals raised throughout our supply chain,” said Tim Smith, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Consumer Products at Blue Apron. “We are honored to receive Compassion in World Farming’s Good Chicken Award in recognition of the accomplishments we have made in our broiler chicken supply and are proud to share our comprehensive animal welfare standards and future sourcing commitments with the public.”
According to Blue Apron, 100 percent of their eggs come from pasture-raised laying hens, which is a high percentage when compared to the 99 percent of non-pasture-raised eggs sold in the US. The company also claims that 100 percent of their pork is sourced from pigs who are raised in group sow housing systems that do not use gestation crates. Forty percent of Blue Apron’s beef is sourced from grass-fed cattle that were raised in a pasture. Over 10 percent of their broiler chickens are pasture raised and the remaining amount of chickens are raised in enhanced welfare indoor systems. In addition, the company claims that 100 percent of all their meat products are free from antibiotics and growth promoters.
“We are proud of how far we have come in our efforts to implement positive change within the food system,” said Smith. “The ethical and humane treatment of animals raised for food has been a top priority of Blue Apron and we are encouraged by our achievements to date across our supply chain.”
In addition to these welfare standards, Blue Apron plans on improving their sustainability efforts to ensure the welfare of animals throughout their supply chain. By the end of 2019, Blue Apron plans on ensuring that all their pork is Certified Humane or Global Animal Partnership (GAP) Step 1-certified. They will also increase their grass-fed beef supply by 10 percent or more by the end of that time period. In general, they plan on making 100 percent of their meat GAP Step 1-certified or Certified Humane by the end of 2019. Additionally, the company will ensure that their chickens demonstrate higher welfare outcomes, are kept in a maximum of 6 lbs./sq.ft. stocking density and will be processed in a manner that avoids pre-stun handling by the end of 2023.
With sustainability being a key factor in the purchasing decisions of shoppers, Blue Apron seems to be taking the right steps towards attracting the dominating millennial demographic. In addition to these sustainability standards, the company recently started to sell their meal kits in Costco stores, which will help them catch the attention of consumers looking to purchase meal kits without the commitment of the subscription model.