Sales of fresh burgers have returned to growth four months on from the horsemeat scandal, aided by good weather and consumer concern over frozen burgers.
Fresh burgers enjoyed a 37.3% year-on-year surge on volumes up 37.1% in the four weeks to 12 May, representing a marked recovery from the four-week period to 17 March, when value and volumes fell 10.6% and 22.8% respectively [Kantar Worldpanel].
By contrast, frozen burger sales continued to struggle, falling 9.2% y-o-y on volumes down 16.2% in the most recent period, although this too was an improvement on the earlier period - sales slumped 43.5% on volumes down 34.5% in the month to 17 March.
Frozen ready meal sales also foundered. In the most recent period, value and volume sales fell 13.7% and 12.6% respectively, albeit less than the earlier period when they were down 17.3% and 18.7%.
Other frozen food sub-categories have benefited. “Consumers are switching to vegetable, chicken and fish-based products and buying less beef,” said Heinz group marketing controller Matthew Cullum.