Amazon files meal-kits trademark, treading on Blue Apron’s turf

Amazon has registered a trademark in the USA for a service described as: “We do the prep. You be the chef.” – leaves little question about the market that the e-tail juggernaut is gunning for here.

Amazon’s July 6 trademark application calls for the delivery of “prepared food kits. ready for cooking and assembly as a meal”.

“Look, you just have to hope that you don’t wake up in the morning and see Amazon has chose to get in your business”, Cramer said on “Squawk on the Street“.

Blue Apron provides recipes and premeasured ingredients that are boxed and delivered to customers for a home meal, with a monthly wine-delivery option. Blue Apron shares are down 21.2% for the month to date while Amazon shares are up 3.5% for the period. Blue Apron is the largest meal kit provider in the United States, followed by HelloFresh, and this is the second hit the company has taken recently.

Amazon weighed on last month’s Blue Apron IPO.

Shortly after the opening bell, Blue Apron was trading at $6.52, down 11.3 percent.

The company sells to consumers a food delivery kit, but it’s far from alone in the space and faces competition from several other startups.

While Blue Apron is perhaps the most extreme example, its plight highlights the unfortunate reality facing many companies in the retail industry: Amazon is coming, and there’s nowhere to hide.

Up until now, though, Amazon’s testing of meal kits has carried no official label, slogan nor branding. Today, Blue Apron stocks hit an intraday low of $6.51 a share, down almost 10 percent. Last week, Marley Spoon said it will soon begin selling a more cost-conscious box of ingredients aimed at helping families cook up an affordable, but quality dinner.

“If Amazon wants to do meal kits, Amazon will do meal kits”, Mark Bittman, who’s served as a consultant to activist investor Jana Partners on Whole Foods, recently told CNBC. “Amazon is in the business to sell everything”.