A brand new survey from the American Frozen Meals Institute (AFFI) has discovered that greater than 1 / 4 of consumers are shopping for extra frozen fruit and veggies than three years in the past. Penetration amongst American shoppers is certainly excessive, with 94% of American households shopping for frozen produce.

AFFI commissioned San Antonio-based 210 Analytics LLC to survey a various vary of households modeled to the U.S. Census to higher perceive shopper perceptions, procuring habits, and the purposes of frozen fruit and veggies. The report, “Frozen Fruits & Greens: Perceptions, Makes use of and Expectations amongst U.S. Shoppers and SNAP-Eligible Households,” revealed that frozen fruit and veggies assist make it simpler for varied households and demographic teams to simply enhance their produce consumption and cut back meals waste.

[Read more: “How Retailers Can Drive Frozen Food Purchases”]

Among the many greater than 1,500 shoppers surveyed, the bulk (86%) agreed that having frozen fruit and veggies makes it simpler to eat extra produce. Eighty-three p.c stated that these frozen staples assist them to cut back meals waste and get monetary savings because of the key attributes of frozen, which embrace an extended shelf life and the power to arrange solely what you want. Moreover, 76% of respondents agreed that frozen fruit and veggies assist them eat produce that they in any other case might not know easy methods to put together.

“The frozen meals class presents a wide range of options for right now’s shoppers, and frozen fruit and veggies stay an necessary part,” stated Alison Bodor, president and CEO of Arlington, Va.-based AFFI. “This survey confirms that consumers are discovering completely different purposes and advantages as they combine these merchandise into their meals.”

The most well-liked makes use of for these frozen objects have been as sides to a major entrée (63% of all frozen fruit and vegetable consumers reported this utilization); as substances in drinks and smoothies (50%); and as additions to pasta and rice dishes (44%). Almost all consumers additionally reported that they purchased each contemporary and frozen produce and relied on frozen fruit and veggies to assist maintain them over between procuring journeys once they have been low on contemporary produce. This information aligns with findings in AFFI’s “Energy of Frozen 2021” market analysis, which discovered that the majority shoppers combine each contemporary and frozen produce of their meal planning.

The survey additionally included a particular assessment of households that meet eligibility tips for the Supplemental Diet Help Program (SNAP). Eight out of 10 SNAP-eligible survey respondents agreed that frozen fruit and veggies make it simpler to eat extra produce, forestall meals waste, and assist get monetary savings. These findings point out the necessary position that frozen meals play in federal feeding packages.

“Because the meals trade and policymakers discover methods to enhance diet and cut back starvation throughout the nation, frozen meals have to be a part of the answer,” added Bodor. “Consumers acknowledge that frozen fruit and veggies provide a straightforward and handy solution to additional embrace produce into their weight loss program, all whereas stretching their greenback additional, because of the diminished waste.”

Gross sales of frozen fruit and veggies in the USA reached $7.1 billion over the 52-week interval ending June 26, and product quantity was 271 million kilos above pre-pandemic ranges, at 3.9 billion kilos. The highest merchandise inside the phase have been plain greens, potatoes and onions, and fruit, with gross sales of $2.9 billion, $2.3 billion and $1.5 billion, respectively.