How to stock frozen in fine food retail

11 April 2023, 09:20 AM
  • Getting your frozen food offering right is important – we find out how you can make the most of your space and cater to customer demand
How to stock frozen in fine food retail

As consumers seek out something that premium frozen food can offer in 2023, independent retailers should certainly take advantage of the benefits.

For Rupert Ashby, CEO of the British Frozen Food Federation (BFFF), these are twofold. “Firstly, stores with unpredictable footfall can benefit from the longer shelf life afforded by frozen which can help with managing stock and what is on offer for the consumer.

“Secondly, the rising cost of restaurant meals might dissuade consumers from eating out as often as they’d like this year, but this doesn’t mean that they don’t want the occasional treat. Premium frozen ranges can help to bring the restaurant experience home and allow consumers to try dishes that would be too difficult or time-consuming to prepare from scratch.

“The increasing ranges of great frozen food can drive such footfall to the retailer and provide them with quality goods that customers will want to come back for.”

According to Matt Whelan, managing director at Fieldfare, “The opportunity is significant as demand for high-quality frozen food continues to grow. The care and focus that fine food manufacturers place on quality and taste, the interesting recipes and innovative ideas alongside the convenience factor make fine frozen food a very attractive proposition for the shopper.”

But as frozen food doesn’t allow the same level of decadent display that ambient and chilled benefit from, a little more effort is required to draw attention to your range.

Rupert suggests, “To ensure that products have shelf appeal, the same housekeeping rules should be applied to frozen food as to chilled and ambient. Freezers should be kept clean and frost free. Stack products so that the packaging can be read clearly and make sure that each SKU has the appropriate space and visibility.

“If you visit a range of different retailers, the difference in the way they display their frozen produce is often stark. Some with faceless cabinets, frosted up doors and broken products at the bottom, to welcoming open freezers that are well branded and can attract new customers to the frozen aisle to browse and ultimately try the products.”

“To raise awareness amongst shoppers, we actively promote the Fieldfare brand to consumers. Our recent magazine and social media advertising activity reached over 8 million prospective shoppers, which is great news for our stockists”, Matt adds.

Of course, independent retailers should be aware of foodie occasions, and Rupert concludes, “Annual calendar events will always provide good opportunities for upselling luxury frozen products. The frozen aisle can be enhanced by using Point-of-Sale material available from your supplier and inspire customers around Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day and Easter when the occasion calls for a special meal.”

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