HEALTHY eating is driving the market for chilled foods in the UK, but convenience and quality continue to influence buying decisions.
Those are some of the findings of the Key Note Chilled Foods 2015 market update.
A spokesperson for the research firm said: “The UK consumer is becoming increasingly health-conscious based on regular exposure to dietary advice and growing concerns over obesity.”
The report reckons that chilled foods’ wide range of products and price points has helped the products appeal to consumers and increase sales. In 2014 the market value of chilled foods increased by 3.6% to reach £10.32bn.
In the last five years sales have shown consistent year-on-year growth and had increased 17.2% since 2010.
Chilled pizza was the fastest growing sub-category in 2014 while sliced cooked meats maintained its position as most valuable of the sub-categories.
Value-added poultry and seafood were the second and third most popular items.
The only sub-category to decrease in value was chilled cakes and desserts.
The report found that own-label chilled foods continue to dominate the market and spicy foods had surged in popularity.
Key Note suggests immigration, travel trends and globalisation have encouraged UK consumers to be more experimental with ethnic foods and exotic flavours.
It predicts an increase in demand for premium chilled foods which it expects will benefit branded pizza, ready meals and desserts.
It also forecasts increasing demand for chilled vegetarian products, gluten-free and other free-from products.
Overall it predicts continuing chilled foods market growth, estimating category sales will increase by 15.3% between 2015 and 2019.
• The Key Note Chilled Foods Market Update 2015. Available from www.keynote.co.uk