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Convenience and snack food

Convenience continues to be a major driving factor in food industry trends - and it isn’t slowing down anytime soon. Busy lifestyles and with less time in the day, families and individuals look for quick, easy options for their meals and snacks.  In the packaged snack food market, Middle East and Africa records stronger growth than the world average, with a 8% CAGR between 2012 and 2017 in value sales, compared to a 4.5% CAGR globally. 

Gulfood Manufacturing frozen and convenience foods

Product trends

Protein-rich diets are a priority for consumers prompting manufacturers of snack and convenience products to rise to the challenge. Animal protein is set to be 64% of total added protein purchased globally by 2020.

Meal kits, foodservice and prepared foods offer consumers ease in preparing home-cooked meals with minimal hassle. Retail stores are expanding their selections to include convenience foods to meet demand. This also means catering to various lifestyles and diets from vegetarian to gluten free.  

Processing methods

Packaging is at the heart of frozen and convenience food production, including creative design and clever innovation. 

From a food safety perspective, packaging that contains anti-bacterial properties is particularly relevant for eliminating dangerous bacteria such as E.coli that causes food poisoning. These packaging innovations take time to be brought into the mainstream and will initially cost more, but will serve companies in the long-term by reducing waste and saving money.

Providing greater transparency in ingredient provenance and production methods could help enhance understanding of canning and freezing methods for example and the limited impact it has on the integrity of the end product in terms of quality and taste.

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