One local sandwich shop is about to take aim at grocery delivery apps like Instacart. Next week, the Seattle-based chain Homegrown — which emphasizes its use of ingredients from sustainable sources — will launch an online grocery store called Homegrown Goods. The new service offers delivery on a selection of pantry staples and other items to areas mostly north of the city and on the Eastside.
When the site starts up, customers can choose from around 180 items on the website from a variety of local businesses, including Macrina Bakery, Salumi, Ellenos, and Beecher’s Handmade Cheese, as well as products from local Pacific Northwest farms, such as chicken from Draper Valley and beef from Painted Hills. Among the neighborhoods that will be served at launch are Fremont, Greenwood, North Capitol Hill, Wallingford, Kirkland, Redmond, and Madison Valley. Homegrown CEO Brad Gillis tells Eater Seattle prices will be “competitive with other local markets.”
Online grocery delivery services are on the rise during the COVID-19 pandemic. But Gillis says he hopes that Homegrown Goods can compete in a crowded market by highlighting local producers and farms. He aims to add around 40 items to the inventory each week (including ready-to-heat meals), and include more neighborhoods. Everything will be delivered via a small fleet of Homegrown’s own delivery vehicles and drivers, and Gillis says the company has established strict safety precautions, providing personal protection equipment to all employees, instituting temperature checks, and implementing social distancing measures.
Gillis also says Homegrown Goods will likely be a permanent part of the business. The sandwich chain has closed half of its 12 Seattle locations temporarily during the pandemic, and its catering arm was “decimated.” But Gillis will use resources from the catering side and money from a Paycheck Protection Program loan to hire back workers and ramp up the grocery service, while aiming to bring back the closed sandwich shops as well.