Amazon has discontinued Prime Pantry, a delivery service focused on grocery and household staples that was one of the e-retailer’s early online food-selling ventures, according to published reports.
The service quietly ceased to operate on Wednesday, Jan. 6, an Amazon spokeswoman told Bloomberg News, resulting in thousands of products previously available under the Prime Pantry banner being added to the company’s main retail site.
Rolled out in 2014, Prime Pantry offered an assortment of shelf-stable food and snacks, as well as cleaning products, with the aim of getting shoppers to stock up on such items.
To begin with, the service was available only to members of the Prime free shipping program, but Amazon added a $5 a month subscription option in 2018. Those still paying the monthly fee were informed of the pending shutdown last month and received refunds, the company spokeswoman told Bloomberg News.
“As part of our commitment to delivering the best possible customer experience, we have decided to transfer Amazon Pantry selection to the main Amazon.com store so customers can get everyday household products faster, without an extra subscription or purchase requirement,” she noted in an email.
As well as nonperishable food sold on Amazon’s main retail site, members of the $119-per-year Prime program in many geographic locations can order fresh food from Amazon Fresh and the company’s Whole Foods Market banner.
Seattle-based Amazon is No. 2 on Progressive Grocer’s 2020 PG 100 list of the top grocers in the United States, while Austin, Texas-based Whole Foods is No. 24.