Walmart expanding meal kit service after Shreveport success

(Source: Walmart)
(Source: Walmart)
Updated: Mar. 6, 2018 at 7:57 PM CST
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SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - Walmart is making a major step forward in the competitive and quickly expanding market of meal kits. And the giant retailer credits at least part of that decision on the success of the pilot meal kit program in Shreveport.

Right now, there are 250 Walmart stores across the country selling these meals kits, with the service expanding to a total of 2,000 stores this year.

When it comes to buying the new meal kits at some Walmart stores, like the one in Blanchard, it doesn't long to find a big fan of those ready-made meals.

That includes customer Stephanie Entwistle who told us, "It's amazing. I loved it. It's basic. I feel it's great for moms because we're really, really busy. So, it's basically a box with the meat and the vegetables, everything is cut up and you put it together and you're done."

Entwistle said she buys the Walmart meal kits at a rate of almost once a week. And she's convinced buying these meal kits is a real cost-saver.

"Oh definitely. We're saving for Disney so that's why I've been doing that actually. So I won't wander in the store. I'll just get exactly what's on the list and be done."

KSLA News 12 decided to shop for the separate ingredients to see if the meal kits save you money.
Here's what we found for the pot roast and mashed potatoes menu items:

-Chuck roast:               $14.86
-Carrots:                      $  1.88
-Mashed Potato Box:  $  2.68
-Parsley:                      $  1.98
-Gravy packets(2):       $  1.04

Total:  $22.37

The pot roast and mashed potatoes meal kit cost just $10 dollars for two people. That means we could still buy another pot roast kit and still have $2 and change left over.

But then you have to consider the time it took to shop and how much your time is worth to you.

In our case, we spent about 25 minutes to find and buy those groceries.

Compare that to the amount of time it took to drive to the Walmart store and pick up the kits you ordered online. That may help explain why these meal kits are so popular.

Walmart is one of a number of business now offering such meal kits.

Amazon announced in February it would start delivering groceries from Whole Foods through its prime now delivery service.

Other meal kits include Blue Apron, Hello Fresh and Sun Fresh.

Worldwide revenues from fresh food subscriptions are expected to top $10 billion in just a few years.

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