Frozen food has been losing its appeal among consumers since the mid-1990s to the benefit of chilled, which is perceived as being better quality and fresher. Between 1990 and 2004, chilled fish sales grew by 24% to reach an estimated value of £397m. Salmon is the most popular chilled fish of choice, according to Mintel, followed by cod.
Several factors have helped drive sales: as consumers drifted away from frozen fish, more focus was placed on chilled, and therefore its profile has been lifted; supermarket fish counters have heightened interest in chilled fish; and the growth in omega-3 fish oil awareness has helped boost sales of chilled trout, salmon, tuna and mackerel in particular.
The UK seafood industry hosts an annual Seafood Week to promote the many benefits of seafood. The dates for this year’s Seafood Week are October 7-14.
September 30 has been marked ‘Stir FryDay’ as part of the Department of Health’s ‘5 A Day’ fruit and vegetable programme. Schoolchildren, community groups, cooking classes, Primary Care Trusts, workplaces, supermarkets and communities across England are being invited to take part in events such as cooking demonstrations, tasting sessions and recipe competitions, to encourage people to eat more fruit and vegetables. Stir FryDay resource packs are available at www.5aday.nhs.uk.