New Soylent Powder Tubs


#1

Really? It is a great idea but is it really worth the extra $1.15 per meal? I would like to go to tubs for convenience but the increase in cost is not at all justified. It is the same exact product with different packaging. If you just do one meal a day that is more than 30 dollars a month. I don’t like the pouches as much as the next guy but I have a system. I have a whey protein jug (5lbs) that I empty the pouches into every month so I don’t have to deal with the pouches and the messy zippers. I would understand a small increase in price to not have to do that, but you are never going to convince me that it is worth almost double what it costs in pouches.


#2

Well I sure hope the bags aren’t phased out.


#3

@Conor on Reddit:

Q:
If they got rid of bags and used this for the same price I’d be happy but meh.

A:

The bags are going nowhere. We produced this form factor to respond to one of the more frequent powder change requests. The Tub will be available through multiple outlets.

Q:
Any kind of hint as to why the price is so much higher would be great, thanks. It’s obviously the same price-per-meal as the drink, but the drink is much more convenient, so in terms of responding to the convenience factor, there’s little incentive left to use the tub in comparison to drinking the bottles.

A:

Lower production run, higher material cost, and pricing to be competitive for other outlets such as Amazon.

Q:
So I assume this is mostly intended for retail partners like GNC, etc where it will sell alongside less nutritionally complete protein powders in similar tubs. In that case, I don’t understand why you did a website launch instead of launching at retail. It’s understandable to me that someone might pay a higher cost for the convenience of purchasing locally. But putting it on your website at that price, before a brick-and-mortar launch just seems like bad marketing. “Here’s our new product. Nothing’s different but it comes with more than a 2/3 price increase!”

A:

Becuse if we just launched it in retail people would then be upset that it is not on the site.

So basically, the traditional, direct-to-consumer powder business will stay intact. They’re just adding the new GNC / Costco powder business on top of it to catch the retail crowd. That’s a completely different animal because distributor margins and whatnot are involved, and they’re aiming for price parity on their website.

Although, I would like confirmation from @Conor that powder bags are going to stay the same price for the foreseeable future (i.e. through 1.9 and beyond). At the very least, we should get some kind of reassurance that those who have a grandfathered powder subscription will keep the same price.


#4

This is not an increase for higher material cost, I promise you for one week of food, 3 tubs; does not cost $42.90 more to manufacture than 7 bags does. You insult our intelligence with galling statements like this.

This isn’t directed at peterdwalker, I see he pulled from a reddit post


#5

So, @Conner will the price go down when the volume goes up? I would switch just because it is (probably) more environmentally conscious. You have to get somewhere near the same cost though.


#6

Confirmed, beyond that we have additional powder development in the works. Expect some big things from the powder line soon.


#7

It’s not just a volume question, we have to price to be able to launch on some platforms and still garner a profit.


#8

I don’t need any assurances. I can promise that if prices increase beyond my ability to pay, my purchases will come to a screeching halt.

As far as big things coming in the powder department are concerned, all I care about is a better product – and flavors don’t count. Sizes also don’t count. Nutrition does count.


#9

Saw this one on Reddit:

We will make food so cheap only the rich will cook. ~ Rob Rhinehart

Yep, pretty much. Things appear to be going backwards, price-wise.

At any rate, just buy yourselves a tub, and dump your pouches into it.


#10

Amen, that is exactly what I do. I have a 5 lb tub that had Optimum Nutrition whey protein in it, now it exclusively holds my Soylent powder, I dump a weeks worth in at a time.


#11

@Conor Is the Tub fully recyclable like the Drink bottles are?
-Dan


#12

I’ve had Soylent bags rip open inside the saddle bags on my bicycle. I’ve also had a few break while I’m trying to move all the powder to the bottom of the bag without opening it. I realize they’re like this for packaging efficiency but I like to stand them up on the shelf.

This form factor is nice. More durable for my purposes. But to each his own.


#13

my instant reaction was that this is cool but then my brain caught up (and my eyes saw the price)… now I’m just really confused… and it has me considering my allegiance to Soylent (not really, but this whole thing seems so stupid…) :confused:


#14

Retail pricing is difficult. Accepting that the Soylent tub is intended to sell in a retail store like GNC (a popular food-supplement store with many outlets in the U.S.) it would sit on the shelf next to products like GNC TOTAL LEAN™ LEAN SHAKE™ which contains 1.83lb of powder (serving size: 2 scoops, servings per container:16) for $39.99.

So what to charge for the Soylent tub, (2.3lbs of powder, servings per container, 12)? If you price it the same as as the online powder bags ($1.83/400cal) it would list at $22. Now it is around half the price of its very comparable shelf-mate LEAN SHAKE™. What does that say to the customer browsing the shelves? Some might say, ooh, a bargain. Others might get the impression, it must be lower quality, or less complete, or somehow less beneficial than the more expensive LEAN SHAKE™. So a drastically lower price could actually work against you in the retail environment.

Also, priced at $22 retail, how much would Rosa Foods have to discount it in order for a retailer like GNC to even bother stocking it? GNC probably wants at least a 30% markup over wholesale (anyone with retail knowledge please comment). If RF sells tubs at $15 wholesale, they would probably lose money on every one.

Well, then, why don’t they let the retailers charge $35 or so, but continue selling it on the soylent.com site at a price comparable to the bags, e.g. $25? Because the retailers would feel like that was unfair competition, as well as showing them up and making them look bad. So damned if you do, damned if you don’t. IMHO they should never have put the tub on the website at all.


#15

I’m not sure if this will work for retail or not, but I certainly don’t think it’ll sell well online. I did want a packaging solution to the zip locks on the bags, but this is not it. I hope this does well in retail for Rosa Labs sake, but I hope that they are still looking to improve the bagged packaging. I am not willing to pay the up charge to have the meals in a tub. I just want a functioning bag.


#16

Does that mean after opening the tub you have to store it in the fridge and use the entire content within 2-3 days ?


#17

The price.
Packaging more soylent into a single container should be CHEAPER. Hopefully this isn’t a sign of things to come.

Soylent, if your bottom line is hurting, think about doing more aggressive advertising instead of raising prices.
No one I know has any idea what soylent is, unless I told them about it.


#18

I would actually be willing to pay more if I knew RL needed it.

I felt the same way when I found out Pebble was going bankrupt. Like if I knew they needed my money just to stay in business, then take my money for crying out loud. The only reason we complain is because consumers don’t trust companies making a profit off them if they think it is too large of one (or at least, they want to know what those profits are going towards).

I feel like we need one company to go “fully transparent” in order to start a shift towards consumers becoming ‘citizens’ of the companies they are effectively contracting to, which is how I view my soylent subscription.

Part of the reason I stopped enjoying purchasing Apple stuff was because I found out how much it actually costs them to make my iPhone, and that 70% of my purchase is a cushioned extra for them, (which also happens to be the equivalent of 3 weeks of food for me).

But soylent literally feeds me, so I value it (the company and the product) over my iPhone. But when I don’t even know how much profit they’re making off of me, I become suspicious and more likely to react negatively toward price increases.

Purchasing power is something that even those below the poverty line in a developed country have, but we often seem to forget this. I’m okay with a company I like making a profit off of me, but the question is, how much is it making?


#19

For more reasons than price: it is so bloody small at 4800kcal. That’s 2.4 days worth for the 100-percenter, annoyingly short of 5 days for the more common half-timer. To be convenient, a bulk package should have an integral multiple of nominal 2000kcal days.


#20

Traditionally, companies that want to be purchased do everything possible to maximise profits since it makes them look better.