This article is part of our Meat, Fish & Poultry Report 2015.

Meat, fish & poultry’s biggest brands have forked out £14.9m on traditional ad space in the past year, a decline of 6.7%, according to Ebiquity [52 w/e 30 March 2015].

The decline partly reflects a move by the sector’s biggest brand (and advertiser), Birds Eye, to feature a combination of products, such as meat and vegetables (not covered in this data), in its adverts.

As Birds Eye’s spend on ads specifically for poultry and fish products has fallen, Ebiquity says spend on Birds Eye’s brand-wide ads has risen significantly. The brand says investment will continue to increase this year with the continuation of the Mix Up Your Menu campaign. 

“We’re going to spend a lot more than anybody else in the category,” says Andy Weston-Webb, Birds Eye UK and Ireland MD. “We are planning to spend £20m this year, driving a combination of our marketing initiatives, from core family favourites like fish fingers to innovation like Stir Your Senses and SteamFresh. That level of marketing support is really important in a challenging market environment. It’s really important for brands to invest heavily to drive shoppers in store.”

Young’s, meanwhile, says it will continue to push its Gastro and Chip Shop lines through the Food Envy campaign with foodie cat Malcolm, voiced by Rupert Everett. “We’ve just had the feedback from consumers on that campaign and it’s been hugely positive and well-received, so we will continue to see much more of Malcolm in the future, although I’m not sure he’ll ever get any fishy in his little dishy,” says Yvonne Adam, marketing director at Young’s Seafood. The brand is also set to heavily invest in digital.

Meat, fish & poultry: top 10 advertisers

MediaTOTAL CinemaOutdoorPressRadioTV
Brands Spend (£) y-o-y% % % % % %
Birds Eye poultry 3.7 -6.3 - - - - 100.0
Birds Eye fish 3.5 -18.4 - - 0.4 - 99.6
Richmond 2.6 -27.2 - - 1.6 - 98.4
Peperami 1.5 - - - - - 100.0
Young’s 1.4 -5.4 - - 11.3 - 88.7
Mattessons 1.1 20.4 - - 0.7 - 99.3
The Saucy Fish Co. 0.5 -65.9 - - - - 100.0
Wall’s Sausages 0.3 973.0 - - 19.4 - 80.6
Denny 0.2 138.2 - 7.7 - - 92.3
The Funky Fish Kitchen 0.1 56.3 - - 100.0 - -
TOTAL 14.9 -6.7 0.0 0.1 2.3% 0.0 97.6

Here’s our pick of the most significant meat, fish & poultry campaigns of the past year:

Birds Eye – The Proposal

It’s not the proposal most women would dream of. But the woman in Birds Eye’s latest ad seems happy enough with a subtle suggestion of marriage over a dinner of Cod with Rosemary & Tomato and a Green Vegetable Medley. In all fairness, Birds Eye isn’t going for spectacular, movie-worthy dining experiences with its Food of Life advertising campaign – instead it is focusing on the little moments by putting frozen food at the centre of a healthy family meal.

The Saucy Fish Co

The guy gets the girl, the fish gets the sauce, and the cat gets, er, some maracas. The last bit aside, The Saucy Fish Co is out to prove that fish can be enjoyed as part of an everyday lifestyle by following the cartoon adventures of a new couple and their cat – from a meal for one on the sofa, to entertaining friends and even camping (just watch out for bears).The campaign features NPD tapas inspired Squid and Chorizo in a Sherry and Herb sauce.

Peperami – Five a Day

Peperami has unleashed the cannibalistic Animal once more in its ‘Five a Day’ advert which pokes fun at health and waste messages. After all, who needs veggies when you can enjoy the meaty taste of Peperami? In the latest instalment, we see the outrageous animal watching a news report about leftover veggies being thrown in the bin before holding up his hand and shouting ‘I always get my five a day’ before munching off his meaty fingers. Voiced by Enn Reitel, known for Spitting Image, Animal is wearing Doc Martens as part of a tie up with the footwear brand.