The Iceland supermarket chain in the United Kingdom is “undertaking the biggest shakeup in its own-brand history” in a campaign to launch 550 new or improved products that began on September 2. The overhaul of its private label program followed months of analysis of market trends, social media and sales developments, as the Deeside, Wales-headquartered company seeks to create the UK’s first store brand range driven directly by customer feedback.
The retail frozen food business has enjoyed a steady resurgence in Britain. A report by The Grocer trade magazine published in May revealed that the category jumped in value by 3.4% to £6.3 billion last year. Shoppers from all walks of life are experiencing the benefits of frozen food products, with figures from Kantar showing that nearly 37% of Iceland’s sales came from the more affluent ABC1 social group in the last six months of 2018 – five years ago this was less than a third.
Frozen foods are also witnessing a surge in popularity among discount shoppers, where 39% are now looking to economize by opting for frozen fare. Research conducted by Sheffield Hallam University suggested that switching to frozen food can reduce household food bills by as much as £250 a year.
All new products have been informed by customer product reviews, shared on social media, Iceland’s e-commerce site and in-store, alongside trend research. New lines unveiled are comprised of recipe revival dishes well known to customers in addition to brand new items.
Andrew Staniland, director of frozen at Iceland, stated: “We undertook an intensive research project, analyzing our customer feedback and reviewing our product recipes to challenge each one, and we’re proud and confident that our new recipes and products will respond to customer trends.”
The supermarket chain is also introducing a carefully selected range of Limited Edition frozen products, which will be released throughout the coming months to provide a steady stream of new products for customers to try each week. The range will provide shoppers value for money alongside innovation. From Steak and Stilton Pie to Pomegranate Seeds and Salt and Pepper Chips, the “when it’s gone it’s gone” selection will be filled with trend-led and seasonal products that shoppers will have to be quick about snapping up.
Iceland will launch over 500 Limited Edition items over the coming 12 months, reflecting an investment of around £2 million in innovation.
The company is no stranger to delivering products in line with customer demand and trends. The No Bull meat-alternative range available at Iceland stores has sold over 2.6 million burgers since its launch. The line was introduced in response to requests for more supermarket vegan food, as demand for meat-free food soared by 987% in 2018.