Steps to Start a Frozen Food Business
Marketers of frozen food have found themselves caught between a rock and a hard place during the economic downturn. Though fresh convenience food has gained through positioning that casts it as a less expensive alternative to restaurant
food during a time of recession, frozen convenience food is frequently viewed as a more expensive, less fresh alternative to cooking from scratch at home. The frozen food categories that have been able to grow substantially in this environment are therefore the ones that have been able to elude this paradigm.
Specifically, the mammoth frozen pizza category and the spunky hand-held breakfast category have both found a way to go head-to-head with restaurants; and the prepared vegetable category has been able to triumph on the freshness front via the development of steaming techniques. According to Packaged Facts, these three categories have led the way sales-wise, enabling an otherwise ambivalent market for frozen foods to grow by a modest 2.0% in 2010 to reach sales of $16.8 billion. Packaged Facts expects that marketers in other categories will soon adopt similar strategies, driving sales of fresh foods up another 10% by 2015, to $18.6 billion.
The Frozen Food Industry
Food is a basic necessity of life and it is the endeavour of most governments in the world to make it their top priority to feed every mouth in their land.
But with short supplies in some regions, this is not an easy task. Resources are often unevenly distributed, with some food products available in abundance in some countries and not so in others. Seasonal variations also affect the availability of certain fruits and vegetables.
In the absence of facilities to preserve, process and export food products, there is bound to be over-supply and food spoilage in some regions while people in other regions will not have access to certain food products. A thriving food industry across the world is now tackling this problem.
According to recent studies, the frozen food industry has been witnessing phenomenal growth during the present economic downturn, as consumers are looking for cheaper alternatives to fresh fruits, vegetables, and meats. Even the military depends on frozen food to a great extent, especially in camps located in remote areas.
Japan had conquered most of Southeast Asia during World War II, effectively cutting off America’s supply of tin canned goods. Canned foods were required by the military, which suffered as a result. In came frozen food to replace canned food. Spinach was the first frozen vegetable to be sold.
Most vegetables and fruits are picked, packaged and frozen within 6 hours of being harvested, and hence contain more of certain vitamins than the fresh ones we buy from the market. These may have been harvested five or more days before they are actually cooked, since they typically spend more time in refrigerators at home as well.
How to Start a Frozen Food Business
Starting a frozen food business is fairly simple and can be done with very little overhead. However, it will take some planning
, as several different kinds of frozen food business models are in the marketplace. This article will help you choose one that suits you and develop a delivery method and a marketing plan
so you earn a solid reputation that, in turn, will result in residual income for you in the future.
Choose your products. Virtually thousands of foods are sold frozen. From pizzas to pickles, the gambit is being covered by many. This means you will likely never be all things to all people. However, it also means opportunities to specialize are ample. Choose products that are simple to obtain and market at first. If you have a recipe of you own, you may start there. If you do not, look for wholesalers that sell unique products that are not currently available in your area.
British Frozen Food Federation
Trade association for frozen food industry. Useful website for information on technical know how,
legislation, statistics, annual awards, and history and industry news.
Chilled Foods Association
Trade association for chilled food manufacturers. Have a member’s directory, technical factsheets,
industry news, product development and useful links page
Foods for Trade
It’s a free marketplace for food manufacturers
, exporters, importers, and distributors. They serve as online
portal for food companies to introduce and advertise themselves in front of potential buyers.
Food Storage and Distribution Federation
Site of the trade association for the food logistics industry in the UK. Offers news, events, a list of
members, and a selection of publications for sale.
The Ice Cream Alliance
A forum for suppliers, retailers, caterers and manufacturers of ice cream products in the UK. The ICA
publishes ‘Ice Cream’ – industry monthly magazine and organises the annual trade conference, exhibitions,
competitions and regional social events. The site includes a detailed links page of ice cream producers and
retailers in various regions of the UK who have web sites.