Bord Bia: Time-poor consumers are looking for shortcuts but don’t want to compromise on taste or quality; more diverse foods are sought by different ethnic groups, well-travelled consumers as well as the increasing number with specific dietary requirements.

These were some of the recent findings of Bord Bia’s Futures of Frozen research. It explored the trends shaping consumer behaviour and the future of frozen food. Its aim was to identify potential opportunity areas for Irish frozen food manufacturers.

In its latest update, Bord Bia researchers examined the area of ‘cool living’.

According to sector manager of frozen food, Bord Bia, Stephanie Moe, there are many business opportunities in this area, for example sophisticated shortcuts, new diets and ‘anytime anywhere’ philosophy.

“Sophisticated shortcuts. This opportunity is all about reframing the role of frozen as a convenient meal solution, beyond just ready meals. Frozen foods could incorporate more pre-assembled meal kits and meal accompaniments, allowing consumers to use frozen foods for a variety of meal occasions,” she explained.

In the area of new diets, she said there is an opportunity for frozen food to address ever-increasing dietary needs and aspirations.

“With allergies and intolerances on the rise, frozen foods must strive to remain relevant to consumers with such dietary requirements as well as the growing number opting to cut back on such allergens (wheat, dairy and so on) by choice rather than by necessity.

With regard to ‘anytime, anywhere’, the Bord Bia expert said given people’s increasingly hectic lifestyles, there was an opportunity for the frozen food category to offer ‘on-the-go’ snacking products as well as indulgence foods.

“With the frozen food not the traditional source of impulse or snacking products (with the exception of ice-cream), the category must work in order to occupy this space in consumers’ minds. In many cases, more advanced packaging formats may need to be explored in order to ensure optimum functionality,” she added.

A hard copy of the full Future of Frozen report is available by contacting [email protected] The presentation on the report as made to companies in mid May can be consulted via this link.

Bord Bia would welcome the opportunity to work with its client companies to assess the most viable opportunities for them and how best to address these.

For further information, please contact [email protected]

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