Frozen Food Market Poised for Robust Growth

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The global frozen food market is projected to expand significantly, reaching a valuation of USD362.2bn by the end of 2029 from USD243.8bn in 2021.

This growth reflects a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.9% during the forecast period from 2022 to 2029, according to Fairfield Market Research.

The market’s upward trajectory is driven by product innovations and the increasing demand for premium, environmentally friendly, and health-conscious frozen food products.

The frozen food market is witnessing a surge in demand for upscale, environmentally friendly, and health-oriented products. There is a growing emphasis on product quality, flavor, provenance, and ethical brand behavior. Recent statistics indicate that 78% of Generation Z and 81% of millennials are willing to pay a premium for food that meets these standards. Millennials, in particular, are inclined to spend more on environment-friendly brands that offer high-protein, organic, and fair-trade products.

The market has seen numerous improvements due to its expansion, particularly in packaging innovations. Flexible packaging, made from multiple-layered laminated sheets comprising plastic, paper, or aluminum foils, plays a crucial role in ensuring product safety, extending shelf-life, preventing contamination, and maintaining customer accessibility.

The growth of the frozen food market is closely tied to the expansion of supermarkets and hypermarkets, which provide the necessary space and infrastructure for the storage of frozen goods. These large-format stores have become the go-to for groceries and food shopping for today’s discerning consumers. Western markets have seen a significant increase in the availability of frozen food, ranging from fish to jackfruit seeds, indicating a broader disruption in the frozen food sector.

To counteract this disruption and address customer concerns about origin, health, and nutrition, frozen food producers must invest heavily in research and development (R&D) and innovation. The current market trend emphasizes thinking globally while acting locally, which has led to the emergence of internationally successful Indian companies as global trends align with local innovations.

Cold chain logistics are critical for expanding the frozen food market share in any country. However, many developing nations lack the necessary infrastructure to provide safe frozen food supplies. Despite the long shelf-life of frozen food, inadequate infrastructure leads to significant product wastage, resulting in financial losses for producers.

The financial crisis in many developing countries has led to a lack of investment in cold chain logistics, further hampering market growth. The import and export of frozen food products are also adversely affected due to inadequate cold chain logistics infrastructure in countries like Bangladesh, South Africa, and Myanmar. However, these emerging markets present substantial investment opportunities due to the growing acceptance of frozen foods among urban consumers.

A significant barrier to the growth of the frozen food market is the perception that frozen food is an inferior substitute for fresh food. Some consumers believe that food prepared a year or more before consumption is not nutritious. However, organizations such as the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the International Food Information Council (IFIC) have asserted that frozen produce can be as nutritious as fresh produce.

Nutrients like vitamin C and folate can be affected by temperature changes, but frozen foods retain their nutritional value better because they are stored at consistently low temperatures. This information is gradually changing consumer perceptions, helping to boost the frozen food market.

North America is expected to lead the global frozen food market by 2027, driven by continuous product launches and increasing demand for ready-to-eat food. Changing lifestyles and busy schedules have led to unhealthy eating habits, resulting in health issues such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and obesity. Consequently, there is a rising preference for healthy food, and heightened health concerns among consumers are anticipated to drive the market over the forecast period.

The Asia Pacific region is also developing rapidly and is expected to be the fastest-growing market, anticipating a high CAGR. The global frozen food market is highly diversified and competitive due to the presence of numerous local and international manufacturers. Many frozen food producers have established large production facilities in various countries to meet growing demand.

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