Heavy Meal

On-the-go pots enjoy rising demand, but frozen and online groceries suffer as shopper habits return to normal

From firm favourites such as instant noodle pots to quinoa salads, the freeze dry specialist is seeing a rising demand for ingredients used in on-the-go meal pots, with enquiries up 30% since offices started to reopen in spring.

Across Europe, workers are returning to offices with more consistency, with UK government data showing 60% of workers are now back in their regular workplace. The return of office workers has also led to an increase in city centre footfall and a fresh demand for ready to eat on-the-go food, according to European Freeze Dry.

Diana Morris, Country Manager UK for European Freeze Dry, said: “The combination of convenience and nutritional value make the on-the-go pots a firm favourite. We pack in all the goodness and nutrition of our ingredients through our process and that makes for a healthy snack.

“After almost 18 months of remote working, employees returning to the office are finding it easier again to pick up on-the-go meals for a quick lunch so they can enjoy a nutritious, tasty meal that is ready to eat in minutes.

“Retailers will also be looking at new ways to make food-to-go affordable through new promotions and capitalising on the popularity of the grab and go meal deal. Similarly, people’s diets and requirements have changed and we are constantly working with suppliers to produce nutrition heavy meals packed with additional protein or containing new plant-based ingredients and formulations.”

Frozen ‘will remain on an upward trajectory’ despite sharp fall

Frozen sales will also remain strong as hospitality re-opens, according to the British Frozen Food Federation (BFFF). That’s despite the sector witnessing a sharper yearly decline in sales than other grocery categories in the UK as shopper habits return to normal.