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Consumption Habits Control Ready Meals Market

10 October 2014

The evolution of consumption habits across the world means both retailers and manufacturers need a renewed understanding of consumer’s changing lifestyles and how this will affect their product choices.

A report “Identifying new opportunities in the Prepared Meals markets and responding to evolving consumer need states” shows that consumers in the global bottom 50 percentile of global wealth are more likely to turn to Ready Meals than those in the top 50 percentile.

It also shows that men are more reliant on convenient offerings than women in developed countries.

The report states that eating occasions are becoming increasingly informal with people more likely to eat on their own or jn combination with other activities.

However, consumers are also looking for indulging treats that offer moments of escapism.

All this offers opportunities for the manufacturers of ready meals and sales of premium Ready Meals are increasing as consumers increasingly associate processed food with inferior taste and quality.

The report shows how consumer behaviour is evolving and this will open up new opportunities in the Prepared Meals market.

This includes a more holistic understanding of health and the role drinks can play in meeting these needs the continuing influence consumers’ busy lives has in changing consumption habits the ongoing key role taste will play in consumer choices.

The report identifies key consumer demographic groups driving consumption of Prepared Meals in two regions based on economic positioning: Developed Economies (France Germany Italy Spain the UK and the US) and Emerging Economies (Brazil China and Russia).

The figures show the volume of Prepared Meals consumption attributed to specific age gender wealth and location groups as well as identifying the key motivations driving consumption in each of these regions.

In addition the report identifies whether these consumers "over" consume in Prepared Meals (i.e. they account for a higher proportion of occasions than the proportion of society they represent overall)

The evolution of the state of consumer need is expected to create opportunities for ready meal producers in four areas:

evolving meal times
managing living costs
indulgence and
health.

Analysts have also forecast that the Global Ready Meals market will grow at a CAGR of 4.69 per cent over the period 2012-2016.

One of the key factors contributing to this market growth is the growing innovation in packaging.

The Global Ready Meals market has also been witnessing the increasing concerns of health and wellness among consumers.

However, the rising safety issues associated with ready meals could pose a challenge to the growth of this market.

A second report, the Global Ready Meals Market 2012-2016, covering the Americas, Europe, and the APAC and the MEA regions shows that the key companies dominating this market space are Nestlé S.A., ConAgra Foods Inc., and H.J. Heinz Company.

Commenting on the report, an analyst from the team said: “The world is witnessing an increase in obesity-related diseases, such as heart disease and diabetes, and an increase in the aging population.

“People are increasingly realizing the importance of a healthy lifestyle and are opting for healthier products to fight such diseases.

“Therefore, companies have started focusing their marketing efforts on health and well-being products by installing displays in stores that will help health-conscious customers identify healthy foods. In addition, the increasing concern for health and well-being has also created the demand for ready meals that have been made with natural and organic ingredients.

“The packaging of ready meals is also expected to undergo a revolutionary change, and vendors are expected to shift their focus onto developing and using packaging that is eco-friendly and biodegradable.

“Therefore, the increasing concern for health and well-being among customers is another trend that is expected to impact the Global Ready Meals market during the forecast period.”

The report says that one of the main drivers in this market is increasing innovation in packaging and the increasing need to retain the vitamin content, the colour, product quality, texture, taste and shelf life of the products during the entire cycle, from production to consumption, has encouraged producers to focus on innovating new packaging designs that retain the attributes of the final products.

Producers have also been working collaboratively with packaging manufacturers to stay competitive in the market.

While there is intense competition in the market, the Global Ready Meals market is a highly fragmented market with the presence of international and local processors.

October 2014

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