Frozen Heats Up Baby Food Biz
By Bernice Hurst, Management Director, Fine Food Network
Small-batch produced frozen baby food is becoming the product of choice for busy families seeking high quality, tasty, nutritious meals for their little ones. Without the time to prepare a variety of tiny portions from scratch, demand for products with little or nothing in the way of additives, preservatives, salt or sugar is booming.
Noting this demand, suppliers have sprung to the rescue. In the U.S., companies such as Evie’s Organic Edibles and Homemade Baby offer products through retailers as well as shipping directly to customers.
Gift certificates introduce new parents who may not have yet come across them in any other way. Most pride themselves on delicious and interesting flavor combinations that develop children’s palates along with early acceptance of healthy food. They have also inspired the competition with big names such as Gerber’s adding an organic line and Earth’s Best using new (to them) spices such as cinnamon to what may have been otherwise bland soups.
Freezing normally requires fewer preservatives than shelf stable foods and helps maintain freshness, something that is particularly attractive to parents of young children. As for price, most parents are willing to pay that little bit extra for confidence where their offspring are concerned although Theresa Kiene, co-founder of Homemade Baby, says most of their customers are simply concerned parents who have made fresh food a priority.
Discussion Questions: Will frozen be a long-term trend in baby foods? How will that affect retailers’ frozen departments?
More small companies are producing frozen ranges in small portion packs that parents seem to prefer to canned or jarred varieties. The perception that fresh
food frozen immediately after it is produced is better for their babies than jars or cans with much longer shelf-life may be influencing their decisions as much as the wider choice
of flavors available. But is this another fad or a new long-term pattern?
- A New Tasting Menu in the Baby Section – New York
Times (archived article, sub. required)
- Woolies launches fresh baby food range – Bizcommunity
- Baby Steps Toward Innovation – Forbes