Amazon launches two-hour delivery for Whole Foods Market

Amazon launches two-hour delivery for Whole Foods Market

It wasn't totally certain how Amazon's procurement of Whole Foods (which is a financial specialist in Instacart) would play out in Instacart's market - much like it's not clear yet how it will influence Blue Apron's - yet we're beginning to see a few signs that they will knock heads soon. The company told Bloomberg that the money will help Instacart defend against programs like the one Amazon made public on Thursday: It's testing free two-hour delivery of Whole Foods groceries to Prime customers in four US cities. Now, the grocery world will get a first-hand look at Amazon's strategy, with two-hour delivery available through its Prime Now service in Dallas and Austin, Texas; Virginia Beach, Virginia; and Cincinnati, Ohio.

But Instacart faces uncertainty with the recent acquisition of Whole Foods by Amazon. Amazon placed Lockers, secure delivery points for packages, in nearly 400 Whole Foods stores. Prime Now has previously been used to deliver Whole Foods' 365 Everyday Value private-label items, and Amazon sold an estimated $10 million worth of the private label's products in its first four months on its site.

In the case of the Whole Foods pilot, employees will pick items from store shelves, and hand them off to a driver.

"This is where we're starting", said Stephenie Landry, vice president of Prime Now. "We're going to be expanding". Prime Now is available in some 30 major cities and Amazon will start to chip away at the estimated US$1.3 trillion (RM5.15 trillion) grocery market in the USA as its delivery capacity grows, Cowen said. She didn't specify how many items would be available for quick delivery, but said the selection encompassed "the vast majority of things that people buy most frequently", including produce, meat and seafood, and other staples. "This is a super important space for fast delivery", Landry said.

Instacart, one of the leaders in online grocery delivery, offers same-day delivery, but one- and two-hour delivery from Amazon requires less planning ahead from consumers.

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