As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, frozen food saw dramatic growth during 2020 across all categories that shows no signs of subsiding. AFFI has tracked the growth through monthly reports and took a deep dive into the trends driving it in our second annual Power of Frozen in Retail report.

2021 Power of Frozen

Our second annual report combines the results of more than 1,500 consumer surveys with retail measurement and consumption data from IRI. Done in partnership with FMI – the Food Industry Association this report aims to bring an understanding of consumers perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors regarding frozen food to help the industry optimize production, marketing, merchandising and branding decisions. 

Frozen Foods are a Pandemic Powerhouse

In 2020, the category rang in $65.1 billion dollars in retail sales. This is a 21% increase in dollars and a 13.3% increase in units over the previous year.

Nearly All Types of Frozen Foods Saw Double-Digit Gains

The top-three frozen food categories with the largest percentage of dollar growth in 2020 include: 
– Seafood (+35.3%)
– Poultry (+34.7%)
– Appetizers (+28.9%)

Frozen Food is Popular in Digital Carts

Consumers shopped online at a record rate in 2020 and they put a lot of frozen foods in their cart. Online frozen food sales saw a 75% increase with frozen dinners/entrees, meat, poultry and seafood leading the way.

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Frozen Food Demand Remains Strong

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Frozen Foods See Year-Over-Year Losses, But Demand Remains Robust

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Frozen Food Aisle Trips Are Part of Shoppers’ New Routine

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Frozen Foods Power Their Way Into The New Year

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November and December 2020 Frozen Food Sales

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Strong November for Frozen Foods, Far Ahead of Other Departments

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Frozen Food Sales Remained Highly Elevated Throughout October

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Father’s Day Drove a 26% Gain for Frozen Foods

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Protein Leads Gains in Another Double-Digit Week for Frozen Food

August 31, 2020 Update

Consumer Changes From COVID-19

Our April 2020 report offers a detailed look at frozen food sales early in the outbreak of COVID-19. We hosted a webinar where report author Ann-Marie Roerink of 210 Analytics took a deeper dive into the results.

The Power of Frozen in Retail Research

The Power of Frozen in Retail, done in partnership with the Food Marketing Institute, examines the consumption, purchase drivers and use of frozen foods. These research findings, along with actual sales and consumption data, provide a comprehensive 360-degree view of frozen food to equip frozen food manufacturers and their retail partners with opportunities for continued growth.

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