The Battle Over Grocery Delivery

With its recent purchase of Whole Foods, Amazon is poised to give a boost to its online grocery delivery service, AmazonFresh. While the internet giant’s forward strategy is not public information, it doesn’t require tremendous imagination to see how the two companies might complement each other.

Meanwhile, something similar just went online in Greater Peoria. On July 13th, Instacart launched a service to bring groceries and other essentials to Peoria and Bloomington-area residents in as little as an hour. Founded by a former Amazon employee, the five-year-old firm was named the "Most Promising Company in America" by Forbes in 2015, and it has been on a growth tear, now servicing thousands of cities across 34 states.

Schnucks, Petco, CVS and Costco are among the participating local stores, and the Instacart delivery area covers over 155,000 central Illinois residents, including those in Peoria, Peoria Heights, Bellevue, West Peoria, East Peoria, Creve Coeur, Bartonville, Bloomington, Pekin, Normal, Carlock, Dunlap, Edwards, Mapleton, Groveland and more. (Visit instacart.com to check service in your area—and get free delivery on your first order.)

Interestingly, Whole Foods has been a top partner and investor in Instacart; that’s likely to change when the Amazon deal closes. So what will that mean for Instacart in Peoria? What will Kroger and Hy-Vee do? What about Walmart and Target? Time will tell, but online grocery delivery is here to stay… even if AmazonFresh is not yet available in Peoria. iBi

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