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Top Trends in Prepared Foods 2017: Exploring trends in meat, fish and seafood; pasta, noodles and rice; prepared meals; savory deli food; soup; and meat substitutes

Top Trends in Prepared Foods 2017: Exploring trends in meat, fish and seafood; pasta, noodles and rice; prepared meals; savory deli food; soup; and meat substitutes

Summary

Consumers' diets are diverse, and while most claim not to follow a specific diet, there is a gradual shift occurring in response to health trends. Interestingly, 44% of consumers in Germany follow a low-meat diet, which is a significant increase from 2014 (26%). Similarly, 6% of US consumers now claim to be vegan, up from just 1% in 2014.

Meal components and ingredients such as vegetables, meat, and staple carbohydrates are consumed most frequently, compared to prepared foods such as ready meals and sandwiches. Vegetables are the most frequently consumed food globally, with a quarter of global consumers eating them almost every day1. Meat, fish, and poultry are also commonly consumed, with 62% of global consumers eating them at least once a week. Furthermore the majority of global consumers eat pasta, rice, or noodles - staple parts of many cuisines - at least once a week.

It has identified six key trends impacting innovation in prepared foods -

  • Go Meat-Free: Rising veganism and awareness of the impact of meat consumption are driving demand for meat-free products substitutes.
  • Premiumized Junk Food: High-quality ingredients can raise the image of food categories that are traditionally seen as unhealthy.
  • Healthy Swaps: Consumers are becoming savvier about food ingredients, so offering alternative prepared foods with enhanced health benefits will appeal.
  • Inspiration Borrowers: Borrowing ideas from other food categories to inspire novel innovations creates opportunities to attract experimental consumers and capitalize on social media exposure.
  • Fresh and Easy: Time-scarce consumers seek convenience but also want to cook their food with fresh and natural ingredients. Meal kits offer both aspects to appeal to these consumers.
  • Ethical Eating: Consumers connect ethical and sustainable lifestyles with wellbeing and wellness, creating demand for more ethical prepared foods.
With meat consumption being continually blamed for negative effects on the environment, lab-grown meat may make its way into the mass market to combat these concerns. It also represents a cruelty-free option. A group of social-savvy tech teams are promising cruelty-free cultured chicken will be available by 2022. The technology will even allow consumers globally to try meat based on rare wild animals, such as panda.

The report Top Trends in Prepared Foods 2017 outlines the key consumer and innovation trends currently impacting the core categories in prepared food: meat, fish, and seafood; pasta, noodles, and rice; prepared meals; savory deli food; soup; and meat substitutes. Trends explored in this research include the meat-free and ethical movements, premiumization and experimentation opportunities, and fresh and easy solutions for everyday meals.

Companies mentioned in this report: Nissin Food, Hello Fresh, Purple Carrot, Mindful Chef, Tyson, Intermarche, Jumbo, Waitrose.

Scope
  • Consumers' diets are diverse, and while most claim not to follow a specific diet, there is a gradual shift occurring in response to health trends.
  • Consumers are less experimental with staple foods such as pasta, rice, and noodles, yet they are willing to experiment with prepared food that they do not consume frequently, such as ready meals.
  • Consumers perceive an ethical and sustainable lifestyle to be an important part of their wellbeing and wellness, and prepared foods aligning with ethical and sustainable issues will appeal to many consumers.
Reasons to buy
  • Identify how brands can innovate to engage consumers as well as showcasing best-in-class innovation examples throughout.
  • Learn what consumer behavior is driving innovation using GlobalData's latest consumer research.
  • Access valuable strategic take-outs to help direct future decision-making and inform new product development.


  • Relevant TrendSights trends
    • The TrendSights trends that are driving growth in prepared foods are pinpointed below
  • Introduction
    • GlobalData has identified six key trends impacting innovation in prepared foods
    • Recommended key innovation platforms across each prepared foods trend
    • Meat is the largest segment by value and volume
    • Food purchases are driven by trust, health, and convenience
    • Given the choice, consumers prefer cooking from scratch over convenience options
    • Staple ingredients and meal components are consumed more frequently than convenience foods
    • Consumers are willing to experiment with prepared food products that they eat less frequently
    • Quality is a highly influential attribute in food products
    • The meat-free movement is trending as consumers seek new or controlled diets
  • Trend 1: Go Meat-Free
    • The rise of veganism and flexitarianism is creating greater demand for meat-free products
    • Young consumers feel less guilty when buying environmentally friendly products
    • Examples we like: burgers go meat-free
    • Examples we like: meat alternatives are available in a variety of formats
    • Implications of the Go Meat-Free trend across different prepared food categories
  • Trend 2: Premiumized Junk Food
    • The use of high-quality ingredients is challenging unhealthy perceptions of prepared meals
    • High-quality ingredients enhance the positive image of "junk food"
    • Case study: Nissin Cup Noodle Rich
    • Examples we like: premium comfort food can be a posh snack or a gourmet meal
    • Implications of the Premiumized Junk Food trend across different prepared food categories
  • Trend 3: Healthy Swap
    • Swapping conventional ingredients for healthy ones is a simple way to improve a product
    • Consumers seek healthy alternatives in their meals
    • Examples we like: using ingredient swaps to create healthier ready meals
    • Examples we like: prepared ingredient swaps offer consumers a healthier meal component
    • Implications of the Healthy Swaps trend across different prepared food categories
  • Trend 4: Inspiration Borrowers
    • Experimentation is always key to enticing consumers
    • Novel features inspired by other categories raise the consumption experience of prepared foods
  • Trend 6: Ethical Eating
    • Examples we like: private label brands are tackling food waste with NPD
  • Trend 4: Inspiration Borrowers
    • Examples we like: inspiration taken from foreign cuisines
    • Implications of the Inspiration Borrowers trend across different prepared food categories
  • Trend 5: Fresh and Easy
    • Meal kits and recipe boxes are trending as consumers want to combine freshness with ease of use
    • Consumers seek fresh, easy, and delicious solution for their meals
    • Examples we like: subscription-based recipe boxes that meet different needs
    • Examples we like: meal kits and ready meals that offer a fresh and easy solution
    • Implications of the Fresh and Easy trend across different prepared food categories
  • Trend 6: Ethical Eating
    • Consuming ethical food is important in creating wellbeing and wellness
    • Ethical food is seen as part of a healthy lifestyle
    • Examples we like: private label brands are tackling food waste with NPD
    • Examples we like: prepared foods with ethical features
    • Implications of the Ethical Eating trend across different prepared food categories
  • The Future
    • Future opportunities for prepared foods
  • Appendix
    • References
    • Websites and resources

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