The Asia-Pacific ready-to-eat food market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 4.1% during the forecast period.
- The major factor driving the growth of the frozen food market is convenience. Other factors affecting the market are the changing food consumption patterns, due to increasing urbanization, thus driving the ready meals market in the region.
- Companies are increasingly introducing health-based ready meals, to cater to the unmet needs of health-conscious individuals, following an active and healthy lifestyle. For instance, National Health Innovation Centre (NHIC) played an instrumental role in commercializing an idea from the Department of Food Services (DFS) from Changi General Hospital (CGH) to introduce the first ready-to-eat texture modified Asian Meals for those with difficulty swallowing. With facilitation by NHIC, CGH and Health Food Matters (HFM) signed a licensing agreement in September 2016 to distribute the meals in countries, such as Australia, Japan, Singapore, and New Zealand.
- However, the idea of instant foods as a hindrance to healthy eating is one of the major factors restraining market growth.
Key Market Trends
Rising Demand For Ready Meals
The sector for ready meals is developing rapidly, due to factors, such as the prevalence of a fast-paced lifestyle, especially in urban areas, which is leading to increased demand for precooked foods, among consumers. The changing food consumption pattern, due to increasing urbanization, is another factor driving the ready meals market, globally. Companies are increasingly introducing health-based ready meals to cater to the unmet needs of health-conscious individuals, following an active and healthy lifestyle. The frozen type ready meals segment held the largest share in 2019, followed by the chilled ready meals segment in Asia-Pacific. The growth can be attributed to frozen food companies revamping their products to include more healthy, flavorful options. The chilled ready meals segment is the fastest-growing segment as consumers are increasingly gaining awareness about the benefits of chilled ready meals, as they have a relatively short shelf-life, thereby, providing consumers the opportunity to enjoy freshly prepared food without needing special skills or having to spend much time preparing meals.
Hypermarkets/Supermarkets to Dominate The Distribution Channels in the Region
Hypermarkets/supermarkets are the primary channels of distribution of the RTE food in the Asia-Pacific region. Wider availability of products under one roof, ranging from soup to ready-to-eat food products, has fueled the growth in the sales channel. Supermarkets sell products at a competitive price in order to expand their consumer base. Bundling of products has been a popular strategy that has promoted the growth of products, such as instant noodles, ready meals, and canned soup. Walmart, Carrefour, Metro Inc., Ito Yokado, AEON, the Tokyu Store, 7-Eleven, and Woolworths are the prominent superstores in the region. The rise in the number of outlets and entry of foreign players have fuelled the growth of the channel in the past years. For instance, in 2019, the German discount retailer 'Aldi' and the US membership-based grocery retailer 'Costco Wholesale' both opened their first brick-and-mortar stores in Shanghai, China. Furthermore, different business strategies, such as digitalization of the retail industry, and establishing stronger online-to-offline integration are employed by players in the market.
The Asia-Pacific market for ready-to-eat food is competitive, having a large number of domestic and multinational players competing for market share. Emphasis is given on the merger, expansion, acquisition, and partnership of the companies, along with new product development, as strategic approaches adopted by the leading companies to boost their brand presence among consumers. Key players dominating the regional market include PepsiCo Inc., Nestlé, Kellogg NA Co., Pondok Abang, and Unilever, among others.
Reasons to Purchase this report:
- The market estimate (ME) sheet in Excel format
- 3 months of analyst support