Birds Eye reveal areas for frozen growth in convenience channel

Birds Eye has revealed the biggest trends and challenges that retailers face within the frozen food market.

In a new report, in partnership with KAM media, surveying 200 independent UK businesses, Birds Eye revealed 34% of retailers have seen increased shopper demand for frozen goods over the last 12 months.

Some 25% are expected to invest further in their frozen category in 2022 – a growth of 6% compared to a similar survey conducted last year.

The survey also explored the barriers that can stop retailers expansion plans.

It found 39% of respondents cited insufficient space for additional freezers as the biggest challenge to the growth of frozen sales in its store.

Supermarkets also mentioned missing out on new consumer trends and shopper demands, as 23% typically stuck with products the store has always stocked.

READ MORE: Food waste ‘frozen out’ of Cop26 despite carbon footprint

“Demand for frozen products within the convenience channel is here to stay, so there is a definite need for retailers to prioritise their frozen range in-store, ensuring they are stocking the right products to capitalise on a real sales growth area,” Birds Eye head of convenience Joss Bamber said.

“Instore space is always at a premium for store owners, so the challenge for retailers is utilising what little freezer space there already is to ensure maximum frozen sales.”

Bamber added: “It’s crucial that retailers are making informed decisions on the best products to stock, so our advice is always to listen to what customers are asking for, stock the core bestsellers and top-up with new products that will excite and attract shoppers to the category.”

Additionally, according to the survey, plant-based products are expected to continue its growth in 2022.

Some 81% of retailers now stock “free-from, plant-based and meat alternative meal centres” as the number of people engaged in a vegetarian or plant-based lifestyle continues to rise.

“With Veganuary just around the corner, many shoppers will be looking for convenient, healthy and cost-effective plant-based options that can be easily added to their diets,” Bamber continued.

“Birds Eye’s Green Cuisine range has performed exceptionally well within the channel over the last year, helping convenience retailers to capitalise on the frozen meat-free sector growth of +50.5% over the last two years.”

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