Source: Goodfella’s

The meals will launch exclusively into Iceland from the end of August

Goodfella’s is making a major move into ready meals.

The pizza stalwart has unveiled an eight-strong range of Italian ready meals, which will launch exclusively into Iceland from the end of August (rsp: £3).

They are: Beef Lasagne, Creamy Carbonara with Chorizo, Fiery Veg Arrabbiata, Fully Loaded Mac & Cheese, Meat Feast Pasta Bake, Mushroom & Garlic Risotto, Spinach & Ricotta Cannelloni, and Supreme Mac & Cheese.

They were “inspired by the rich and comforting flavours of Italy” with “the best authentic ingredients”, and were ”nutritionally balanced and low in salt, while bursting with flavour”, said the brand, adding it had seen “a huge demand in shoppers wanting high-quality ready meals that are tasty but also brilliant value for money”.

They can be oven cooked in 30-35 minutes or microwaved in 10 minutes.

It comes as sales of the brand’s pizzas have been flat over the past year – rising just £5,901 in the mults from £91.43m to £91.4m over the 52 weeks to 16 July 2022 [NielsenIQ].

Goodfella’s isn’t the only big name looking for growth by expanding into ready meals: plant-based pioneer Meatless Farm made its debut in the category in May with a five-strong range of frozen and chilled meals.

Mindful Chef, meanwhile, launched a quartet of chilled meals into Waitrose.

Restaurant brands are getting in on the action too. Both Carluccio’s and Côte have taken their brand into ready meals in the last year, the former with a 16-strong chilled range in Sainsbury’s and the latter with an 11-strong range in Ocado.

The ready meals category performed impressively last year, as shoppers returned to work after the pandemic saw them seek out easy-to-prepare options. Category sales were up 6.7% to £4.2bn over the 52 weeks to 31 October 2021, with chilled meals raking in the highest gains [Kantar].