Amazon is about to unleash a new program that will encourage you to do your bulk shopping from the comfort of your couch.
The company is taking shots at warehouse club stores, like Costco and BJ’s by launching a new business that will allow users to order big boxes of grocery store goods for a fixed shipping price, three sources familiar with the effort told USA Today.
Amazon will call the service Pantry. It should launch in 2014 and will include about 2,000 products like cleaning supplies, canned goods, some beverages, and dry grocery items like cereal. Shoppers will be able to load up a set-size box with as many of the offered goods as can fit without exceeding the maximum weight limit and Amazon will ship it for a small fee. The company plans to target current Amazon Prime users.
Without this service, Amazon can’t really take a chunk of the packaged food market because the cost of shipping individual items exceeds the price it can ask for those items. For example, the cost of a box of cereal would be about equal to the cost of shipping said box. Pantry would make it more economical for Amazon to deliver packaged foods in bulk to customers.
Amazon has designated at least four fulfillment centres to store the Pantry inventory, according to the USA Today.
Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through his personal investment company Bezos Expeditions.
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