Consumption of the traditional favorites within Germany ’s frozen foods market continues to grow, reports Jonathan Thomas.
Germany’s love affair with frozen foods shows no sign of abating. It has Western Europe’s largest market, ahead of the UK – these two countries currently account for over 40% of the region’s frozen foods market in value terms. Frozen foods continue to benefit from the strong demand which exists in Germany for products suitable for providing healthy yet convenient meals and accompaniments, such as pizza and ready meals. For reasons such as these, the category continues to hold its own against the threat posed by chilled and fresh foods.
According to data from the German Frozen Food Institute (DTI), the frozen foods market in Germany was worth EUR13.8bn in 2016, up by 3.8% compared with the previous year. The market has also increased in volume terms – within the last year, consumption grew by 2.5% to 3.63 million tons, whilst per capita consumption amounted to 45.4 kg, up from 44.5 kg in 2015. In 2016, sales of frozen foods via German retail channels were worth EUR7.75bn, or more than 56% of the total market. In volume terms, the share taken by the retail sector dropped to just under half (49.6%), with consumption worth approximately 1.8 million tons. Value sales increased by a rather modest 2% within the last year, although this still represents a reasonable growth figure for such a mature sector.
One of the reasons behind the continued growth in the market is expanding demand for convenient meal solutions amongst time-pressured German consumers. Traditional eating and mealtime patterns have evolved, with the result that frozen foods such as pizza, ready meals and other accompaniments (e.g. frozen potato products) have become staples for many sections of society, ranging from families to younger professionals. In recent years, the average time for preparing meals in Germany has fallen to 25 minutes.
The complete version of this article is available in the September-October print issue of Frozen Food Europe