Ready-to-Eat Food Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2022 - 2027)

Ready-to-Eat Food Market is segmented by Product Type (Instant Breakfast/Cereals, Instant Soups and Snacks, Ready Meals, Baked Goods, Meat Products, and Other Product Types); by Distribution Channel (Hypermarkets/Supermarkets, Convenience Stores, Online Retailers, and Other Distribution Channels); and by Geography (North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, South America, and Middle-East and Africa). The report offers the market size and forecast of the market in value (USD million) for all the above segments.

Market Snapshot

Ready to eat food market Overview
Study Period: 2016 - 2026
Base Year: 2021
Fastest Growing Market: Europe
Largest Market: North America
CAGR: 4.3 %
Ready to eat food market Key Players

Need a report that reflects how COVID-19 has impacted this market and its growth?

Market Overview

The ready-to-eat food market is projected to register a CAGR of 4.3% during the forecast period.

The demand for ready-to-eat food products skyrocketed during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially among the consumers that are not fond of cooking food. Additionally, the restaurants restricting services in fear of a rising number of coronavirus cases had insisted consumers cook at home, thereby leading to an increase in the consumption of ready-to-eat products over the medium term.

Ready-to-eat food products turned into one of the few industries that witnessed a surge in immense demand during the coronavirus pandemic. With countries on lockdown and most people working from home, ready-to-cook food products were flying off the shelves over the last few months. One of the India-based online grocery stores named Grofers even reported a sale surge of 170% in the ready-to-eat category, 31% in the ready-made meals and mixes category, and 41% in the frozen food category, indicating a sudden consumer shift from home-cooked food to ready-to-eat products. In fact, it is speculated that this change in consumer behavior is likely to uplift the market studied significantly in 2021 when compared with 2019.

Young consumers spend most of their income on convenient ready-to-eat food products. Young consumers are the easiest targets for ready-to-eat food manufacturing giants. The convenience level of such products helps to increase the total demand in the market across the world.

Ready-to-eat food products are being considered as the closest alternative to regular food, which can be consumed at any time (such as during breakfast, lunch, or dinner). The initiatives taken by regulatory authorities, like ongoing promotional efforts undertaken by the Singapore Health Promotional Board to create awareness regarding frozen foods and fish products, are driving the market growth.

Scope of the Report

Ready-to-eat foods are precooked, pre-cleaned, mostly packaged, and ready for consumption without prior preparation or cooking. The ready-to-eat food market is segmented by product type, distribution channel, and geography. By product type, the market is segmented into instant breakfast/cereals, instant soups and snacks, ready meals, baked goods, meat products, and other product types. By distribution channel, the market is segmented into hypermarkets/supermarkets, convenience stores, online retailers, and other distribution channels. Moreover, the study provides an analysis of the ready-to-eat food market in the emerging and established markets across the world, including North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, South America, and Middle-East and Africa. For each segment, the market sizing and forecasts have been done on the basis of value (in USD million).

By Product Type
Instant Breakfast/Cereals
Instant Soups and Snacks
Ready Meals
Baked Goods
Meat Products
Other Product Types
By Distribution Channel
Convenience Stores
Online Retail Stores
Other Distribution Channels
By Geography
North America
United States
Rest of North America
United Kingdom
Rest of Europe
Rest of Asia-Pacific
South America
Rest of South America
Middle-East and Africa
South Africa
Saudi Arabia
Rest of Middle-East and Africa

Report scope can be customized per your requirements. Click here.

Key Market Trends

Ready Meals Segment is Driving the Overall Ready-to-Eat Food Market

The growth of the ready meals market is driven by the increase in the convenience offered, in terms of time-saving, and the little effort required for the preparation of these meals. Moreover, the preference for these meals by the working population and millennials has increased, owing to the fact that they only require heating before consumption, which reduces the overall effort. ​With the increasing demand, manufacturers are focusing on developing innovative products to capture the demand and to achieve major market shares. For instance,​ in 2019, Seara Alimentos launched Seara Rotisserie Fit, a low-calorie, low-sodium, preservative-free ready meals range made using fresh ingredients. The low-calorie range has six different flavor options, including one vegetarian.​

Ready to eat food market Key Trends

North America Holds the Major Share of Ready-to-Eat Food Market

The market for ready-to-eat food in the North American region is mainly driven by the increasing demand for frozen pizza and handheld breakfast. These are positioned as low-cost products with quality and freshness. Moreover, these meals have gained equal popularity as the foods found in restaurants and foods found in other food outlets in North America. ​Furthermore, chilled ready meals and frozen ready meals are one of the most consumed categories of ready-to-eat food in the country. In addition, companies operating in the market are focusing on adopting strategic measures to achieve a strong foothold in the country, driving the market growth. For instance, in 2018, Conagra Brands Inc. acquired Pinnacle Foods to grab a major share of the fast-growing snack and frozen food markets. The two companies are investing to become the two fastest-growing frozen meal companies with brands, which include Birds Eye, Power Bowls, and Hungry-Man.​

Ready to eat food market Growth by Region

Competitive Landscape

The ready-to-eat food market is highly competitive with the presence of key players operating in the market, such as Nomad Foods Ltd, General Mills, McCain Foods, Premier Foods Group Ltd, and Conagra Brands. High industrial profitability has led manufacturers to develop powerful competitive strategies, which is intensifying the competition among the existing market players. Major players are intensely embarking on product innovation as their prime strategy to consolidate the market. For instance,​ in 2019, M&S Food (Marks & Spencer) became one of the major food retailers in the United Kingdom to launch a range of own-brand halal-ready meals. In response to the increasing demand for a halal diet, customers will be able to shop a range of six Halal Food Authority (HFA)-certified prepared meals available from 36 M&S stores.​

Recent Developments

  • In November 2020, the producers of seeds and nuts, Whitworths introduced plant-based ready meals that are suitable options for vegan consumers. Each 250g pack of the product contains 20g of plant protein from pulses and grains such as pinto beans, quinoa, lentils, and wheatberries.
  • In November 2018, Nomad Foods Ltd entered an agreement to acquire Green Isle Foods Ltd (Goodfella’s Pizza) from a subsidiary of Boparan Holdings Ltd for approximately USD 274.6 million. Goodfella’s Pizza makes and distributes private-label frozen pizzas in the United Kingdom and Ireland. In addition to the Goodfella’s brand, the acquisition includes the San Marco brand and two frozen pizza manufacturing facilities, which have the potential to provide a foundation for future expansion in the frozen pizza category.
  • In January 2018, Premier Foods's Mr. Kipling brand launched reduced sugar-baked slices made with real fruit in three different flavors, like Smashing Strawberry, Rockin’ Raspberry, and Awesome Apple.

Table of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Assumptions and Market Definition

    2. 1.2 Scope of the Study




    1. 4.1 Market Drivers

    2. 4.2 Market Restraints

    3. 4.3 Porter's Five Forces Analysis

      1. 4.3.1 Threat of New Entrants

      2. 4.3.2 Bargaining Power of Buyers/Consumers

      3. 4.3.3 Bargaining Power of Suppliers

      4. 4.3.4 Threat of Substitute Products

      5. 4.3.5 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry


    1. 5.1 By Product Type

      1. 5.1.1 Instant Breakfast/Cereals

      2. 5.1.2 Instant Soups and Snacks

      3. 5.1.3 Ready Meals

      4. 5.1.4 Baked Goods

      5. 5.1.5 Meat Products

      6. 5.1.6 Other Product Types

    2. 5.2 By Distribution Channel

      1. 5.2.1 Hypermarkets/Supermarkets

      2. 5.2.2 Convenience Stores

      3. 5.2.3 Online Retail Stores

      4. 5.2.4 Other Distribution Channels

    3. 5.3 By Geography

      1. 5.3.1 North America

        1. United States

        2. Canada

        3. Mexico

        4. Rest of North America

      2. 5.3.2 Europe

        1. Spain

        2. United Kingdom

        3. Germany

        4. France

        5. Italy

        6. Russia

        7. Rest of Europe

      3. 5.3.3 Asia-Pacific

        1. China

        2. Japan

        3. India

        4. Australia

        5. Rest of Asia-Pacific

      4. 5.3.4 South America

        1. Brazil

        2. Argentina

        3. Rest of South America

      5. 5.3.5 Middle-East and Africa

        1. South Africa

        2. Saudi Arabia

        3. Rest of Middle-East and Africa


    1. 6.1 Most Active Companies

    2. 6.2 Most Adopted Strategies

    3. 6.3 Market Share Analysis

    4. 6.4 Company Profiles

      1. 6.4.1 Nomad Foods Ltd

      2. 6.4.2 General Mills Inc.

      3. 6.4.3 McCain Foods Limited

      4. 6.4.4 Nestle SA

      5. 6.4.5 Premier Foods Group Limited

      6. 6.4.6 Conagra Brands Inc.

      7. 6.4.7 Fleury Michon

      8. 6.4.8 Dr. August Oetker Nahrungsmittel KG

      9. 6.4.9 The Campbell Soup Company

      10. 6.4.10 The Kraft Heinz Company

    5. *List Not Exhaustive


**Subject to Availability

You can also purchase parts of this report. Do you want to check out a section wise price list?

Frequently Asked Questions

The Ready-to-Eat Food Market market is studied from 2016 - 2026.

The Ready-to-Eat Food Market is growing at a CAGR of 4.3% over the next 5 years.

Europe is growing at the highest CAGR over 2021- 2026.

North America holds highest share in 2020.

Nomad Foods Ltd., Bird’s Eye Ltd., McCain Foods Ltd, Conagra Brands, Inc., Nestlé S.A. are the major companies operating in Ready-to-Eat Food Market.

80% of our clients seek made-to-order reports. How do you want us to tailor yours?

Please enter a valid email id!

Please enter a valid message!