Overview of the UK Frozen Ready Meal Market: Growth, Retail Trends, Own Label, and Vegan Options - Root Kitchen UK

Overview of the UK Frozen Ready Meal Market: Growth, Retail Trends, Own Label, and Vegan Options

David Beaver

The UK frozen ready meal market has witnessed significant growth over the past decade. Convenience, affordability, and improved product quality have contributed to the rising popularity of frozen meals. In today's blog post we'll check out the UK frozen ready meal market's recent performance, retail trends, the influence of own label products, and the increasing demand for vegan options.

  1. Market Growth Over the Past Year: The UK frozen ready meal market experienced steady growth over the past year. Factors such as changing lifestyles, busier schedules, and the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on eating habits have contributed to this growth. Consumers have sought convenient and time-saving meal solutions, leading to increased demand for frozen ready meals.

  2. Retail Trends: The retail landscape plays a pivotal role in the success of the frozen ready meal market. In recent years, online grocery shopping and home delivery services have gained popularity, with major retailers expanding their e-commerce presence. Online platforms have allowed customers to access a wider range of frozen ready meals, boosting market growth.

  3. Own Label Products: Own label products, also known as private label or store brand products, have always dominated the frozen ready meal market. Retailers have invested in developing own label ranges to compete with branded products. Offering competitive prices, improved taste, and greater variety, own label products have always been a significant driving force behind market growth.  We believe this is being driven by the number of awesome brands that are challenging the status quo and coming up with delicious, nutritious meals. 

  4. Rise of Vegan Ready Meals: The growing interest in veganism and plant-based diets has had a profound impact on the frozen ready meal market. Consumers are increasingly seeking meat-free alternatives without compromising taste or convenience. To cater to this demand, manufacturers have expanded their vegan product lines, introducing innovative plant-based options. The availability of vegan frozen ready meals has greatly diversified the market and attracted a new segment of health-conscious and environmentally aware consumers.

  5. Consumer Preferences and Health Consciousness: Consumers' changing preferences have influenced the product offerings within the frozen ready meal market. There is a growing demand for meals that are not only convenient but also healthy, nutritious, and made from high-quality ingredients. Manufacturers have responded to this trend by focusing on product innovation, reducing additives, and incorporating healthier components, such as whole grains and organic produce, into their offerings.

  6. Innovation and Variety: To remain competitive, frozen ready meal manufacturers have focused on product innovation and variety. This includes offering international cuisines, specialty diets (e.g., gluten-free, keto), and portion-controlled meals. By catering to diverse dietary requirements and preferences, companies have expanded their consumer base and attracted new customers.

  7. Environmental Sustainability: Increasing consumer awareness of environmental issues has also impacted the frozen ready meal market. Companies are making efforts to reduce packaging waste, using sustainable materials, and improve the overall sustainability of their products. This focus on environmental responsibility has become a key factor influencing consumers' purchasing decisions.

To sum up, the UK frozen ready meal market has experienced remarkable growth over the past year, driven by factors such as convenience, affordability, and changing consumer preferences. Retail trends, including online shopping and home delivery services, have further fuelled market expansion. Own label products have emerged as strong competitors to branded options, while the demand for vegan options has led to a significant diversification of the market. With an emphasis on health-consciousness, innovation, and environmental sustainability, the frozen ready meal market in the UK is poised for continued growth and evolution in the coming years.

Own label has traditionally dominated the ready meal category but we are seeing more trusted brands that started online adopt an omni-channel approach and start to make the move into traditional bricks and mortar retail and that's what we want to do with Root Kitchen.  We want to raise the bar of supermarket ready meals and make our vegan frozen meals accessible to as many people as possible, so let us know which retailer you would like to see our meals stocked.

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