FFT said the European ready meals market was valued at €30.5 billion in 2013, compared with €26.7bn five years earlier, and said it was predicted to reach €40.85bn by 2016.
The report also showed that the ready meals sector in 2013 was dominated by three major countries in terms of overall expenditure – Germany, the UK and France – together accounting for over 60% of the total market. Spain took another 12% market share.
FFT forecasts that, by 2016, the total European chilled ready meals sector will be worth €12.7bn, an increase of 3.7% in real average annual percentage terms between 2013 and 2016. The frozen ready meals sector is forecast to show real average annual percentage growth rates of 2.6% between 2013 and 2016 to reach €12.5bn. In contrast, canned and dehydrated ready meals will show much lower rates of growth, estimated at 1.9% and 1.3% respectively over the three-year forecast period.
The report said that predicted trends included the push towards premiumisation; an emphasis on health; the introduction of more exotic recipes; a focus on provenance; and the influence of private label.