Specialty Food Magazine

Summer 2019

Specialty Food Magazine is the leading publication for retailers, manufacturers and foodservice professionals in the specialty food trade. It provides news, trends and business-building insights that help readers keep their businesses competitive.

Issue link: https://www.e-digitaleditions.com/i/1119718

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Page 84 of 155

F rozen foods are hot. And shopping the aisle has become uber cool. Premium ingredients that are often plant-based, international cuisines housed in updated, eye-catching packaging, and sustainably-caught fish that is traceable back to its source are some of the innovations in frozen meals—fueling growth while offering shoppers quick, inventive, and healthful choices. According to "The State of the Specialty Food Industry, 2019- 2020" edition, a newly released report from the Specialty Food Association and Mintel, specialty frozen lunch or dinner entrees place in the top 10 categories for retail sales. Specialty frozen plant- based meat alternatives grew 48 percent in retail sales between 2016 and 2018, making it one of the highest dollar growth categories. Specialty frozen breakfast foods grew 19 percent in the same time period. (See report highlights opposite p. 104 or download the full report at specialtyfood.com/stateindustry2019) Dinners/entrees, pizza, and seafood lead dollar sales in the total frozen category, according to the 2019 report, "The Power of Frozen," commissioned by the American Frozen Food Institute and the Food Marketing Institute. Data from Chicago-based market research firm IRI, included in the report (52 weeks ending Nov. 4, 2018), noted that frozen sales outpaced total store and fresh perim- eter sales in 2017. The gap widened last year, with a 2.6 percent sales growth compared to 1.7 percent for the total store, and 1.4 percent for fresh. "The overall health of the department with themes ranging from wellness (such as plant-based) to sustainable and multi-cultur- al ingredients to informative packaging, coupled with its ability to attract a cross section of consumers, based on whatever their desires are, is very strong," says Sally Lyons Wyatt, executive vice president and practice leader, client insights, IRI. While convenience remains a top consumption and purchase driver, ease of preparation (added convenience—think meal kits or pre-portioned smoothies), taste, quality, variety, nutrition, and new diets (Keto, Paleo, etc.) are all reasons consumers are running to the freezer aisle. category spotlight Capello Grain Free Almond Flour Crust 82 ❘ SPECIALTY FOOD MAGAZINE specialtyfood.com

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