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Focus On: Frozen by Natalie Brown

Download the feature synopsis PDF here

Publishing: 25th May

Advertising deadline: 13th May

Submissions deadline: 10h May

The Story

Just a few years ago, the frozen aisle was synonymous with chicken dippers, fish fingers and not much else. Healthy it was not. So as consumers increasingly looked for healthier, fresher options, sales suffered. But as frozen undergoes a resurgence, it is also fast upping its health credentials. A slew of healthy, premium new products are coming into the aisles targeting the modern, clean-living consumer. It seems to be a winning formula. These products are the key drivers of growth in frozen this year, attracting a whole new shopper base to the freezers. So, what have been the main innovations coaxing customers into the frozen aisle? And where are the opportunities for growth in the year ahead?

Main themes

The new health destination: Which brands and products have been instrumental to the category’s transformation from cheap and cheerful to healthy and virtuous? Who are the new shoppers entering the category, and how do key players in the market plan to capitalise on this in the year ahead?

Price and premiumisation: Inflation has been a key driver for the category this year, contributing 42% of total value growth. Which sectors have seen the highest price hikes, and who has been successful in justifying the extra cost to consumers through premiumisation?

Marketing: It’s not just about new products. Big brands have ploughed plenty of investment into marketing in the past year. How has that changed perceptions?

Vegan innovations: Frozen players across the category have focused on vegan shoppers this year, with innovations ranging from ice creams to meal ranges. How will the vegan frozen section develop in the year ahead, and to what extent are these new products attracting non-vegan shoppers?

Major players and start-ups: How are key players ensuring they’re driving incremental growth for the category, and who are the smaller start-ups entering the freezer? How are they differentiating from the mainstay brands in frozen?

Food waste: Frozen is perfectly positioned to cut food waste, but who in the category is really shouting about this? To what extent are shoppers seeing frozen as a sustainable option? What could be done to get the word out there more about the benefits of the freezer?

Innovations: We identify four new products that ideally have not appeared in The Grocer before. including launch date, image and RSP.

Kantar data: Using Kantar commentary, we explain the reasons behind the rise and fall of certain sub-categories.

Nielsen data: Using Nielsen commentary, we explain the reasons behind the rise and fall of the top 10 brands.