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Fish and Shellfish - UK - December 2017

“A combination of rising prices and the outlook for a sustained squeeze on real incomes spells troublesome times for the fish and shellfish market. This is set to entrench and exacerbate the impact of these products’ relatively high expense in limiting usage. However, it is not all bad news, and there is potential for frozen fish/shellfish to prosper in this more austere climate.”

– Emma Clifford, Category Director – Food and Drink

This report examines the following issues:

  • With sustainability an expectation, supporting British fisheries can provide a strong ethical USP
  • Taking cues from processed meat, fish should look to “flexitarian” NPD
  • A need to bust the myths around canned fish processing

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Products covered in this Report
      • Executive Summary

          • The market
            • Stable prices lead to volume growth over 2015-16
              • Figure 1: Forecast of UK retail value sales of fish and shellfish, by value, 2012-22
            • First volume decline for chilled fish in five years
              • A slow but steady volume decline forecast for chilled
                • Volume sales of frozen fish hold steady
                  • Volume sales of ambient fish tumble 6% year on year
                    • Market factors
                      • 2017 sees a surge in the price of fish
                        • Figure 2: Consumer price indices – Total food, meat and fish, January 2012-October 2017
                      • The squeeze on real incomes is a threat
                        • Industry continues focus on sustainability
                          • Companies and brands
                            • Own-label steals share within the chilled fish segment
                              • A reversal in fortunes for Birds Eye
                                • Figure 3: Leading brands’ sales and shares in the UK frozen seafood market, by value, 2016/17*
                              • Only own-label escapes volume losses in tinned fish/shellfish
                                • 2017 is a big year for NPD, driven by private label
                                  • A major premiumisation drive within frozen
                                    • Sainsbury’s encourages shoppers to try lesser-known species
                                      • Adspend hits a five-year high in 2017
                                        • The consumer
                                          • Fish and shellfish are eaten by 85% of adults
                                            • Spending power and presence of children influence usage
                                              • Figure 4: Usage frequency of fish and shellfish, September 2017
                                            • A preference for a tried and tested seafood
                                              • Ease of cooking and lower prices are key selling points
                                                • Figure 5: Purchase habits of fish and shellfish, September 2017
                                                • Figure 6: Factors that would encourage trial of new types of fish/shellfish, September 2017
                                                • Figure 7: Factors influencing choice of fish/shellfish, September 2017
                                              • Concerns over canned fish processing
                                                • Consumers expect sustainability, with ratings a popular concept
                                                  • Figure 8: Behaviours relating to fish and shellfish, September 2017
                                                • Squeezed incomes will affect fish purchasing
                                                  • Frozen can benefit from an income squeeze
                                                    • Figure 9: Expected reactions to an income squeeze for fish and shellfish purchasing, September 2017
                                                  • Fish can look to “flexitarian” NPD too
                                                    • Canned fish can benefit more from scratch cooking
                                                      • Figure 10: Attitudes towards fish and shellfish, September 2017
                                                    • What we think
                                                    • Issues and Insights

                                                      • With sustainability an expectation, supporting British fisheries can provide a strong ethical USP
                                                        • The facts
                                                          • The implications
                                                            • Taking cues from processed meat, fish should look to “flexitarian” NPD
                                                              • The facts
                                                                • The implications
                                                                  • A need to bust the myths around canned fish processing
                                                                    • The facts
                                                                      • The implications
                                                                      • The Market – What You Need to Know

                                                                        • Stable prices lead to volume growth over 2015-16
                                                                          • A hike in prices hit volume sales in 2017
                                                                            • First volume decline for chilled fish in five years
                                                                              • A slow but steady volume decline forecast for chilled
                                                                                • Volume sales of frozen fish hold steady
                                                                                  • Volume sales of ambient fish tumble 6% year on year
                                                                                    • 2017 sees a surge in the price of fish
                                                                                      • The squeeze on real incomes is a threat
                                                                                        • Industry continues focus on sustainability
                                                                                        • Market Size and Forecast

                                                                                          • A hike in prices hit volume sales in 2017
                                                                                            • Figure 11: UK retail value and volume sales of fish and shellfish, 2012-22
                                                                                          • The future
                                                                                            • Figure 12: Forecast of UK retail value sales of fish and shellfish, by value, 2012-22
                                                                                            • Figure 13: Forecast of UK retail value sales of fish and shellfish, by volume, 2012-22
                                                                                          • Income squeeze will hamper growth
                                                                                            • Health credentials keep fish on the menu
                                                                                              • Trading down set to see affordable segments gains share
                                                                                                • Forecast methodology
                                                                                                • Market Segmentation

                                                                                                  • First volume decline for fresh fish in five years
                                                                                                      • Figure 14: UK retail value and volume sales of chilled fish and shellfish, 2012-22
                                                                                                      • Figure 15: Forecast of UK retail sales of chilled fish and shellfish, by value, 2012-22
                                                                                                      • Figure 16: Forecast of UK retail sales of chilled fish and shellfish, by volume, 2012-22
                                                                                                    • Volume sales of frozen fish hold steady
                                                                                                        • Figure 17: UK retail value and volume sales of frozen fish and shellfish, 2012-22
                                                                                                        • Figure 18: Forecast of UK retail sales of frozen fish and shellfish, by value, 2012-22
                                                                                                        • Figure 19: Forecast of UK retail sales of frozen fish and shellfish, by volume, 2012-22
                                                                                                      • Volume sales of ambient fish tumble 6% year on year
                                                                                                          • Figure 20: UK retail value and volume sales of ambient fish and shellfish, 2012-22
                                                                                                          • Figure 21: Forecast of UK retail sales of ambient fish and shellfish, by value, 2012-22
                                                                                                          • Figure 22: Forecast of UK retail sales of ambient fish and shellfish, by volume, 2012-22
                                                                                                      • Market Drivers

                                                                                                        • 2017 sees a surge in the price of fish
                                                                                                            • Figure 23: Consumer price indices – Total food, meat and fish, January 2012-October 2017
                                                                                                          • The squeeze on real incomes is a threat
                                                                                                            • Figure 24: CPI inflation vs percentage change in average weekly earnings, regular pay (excluding bonuses), January 2012-September 2017
                                                                                                          • Trade and fishing policies post-Brexit remain unresolved
                                                                                                            • Fish intake continues to fall short of recommendations
                                                                                                              • Industry continues to focus on sustainability
                                                                                                                • Retailers launch labels and initiatives
                                                                                                                  • Brands work on responsible tuna sourcing
                                                                                                                    • North Sea cod certified by MSC
                                                                                                                      • MSC under fire for allegedly misleading consumers
                                                                                                                      • Companies and Brands – What You Need to Know

                                                                                                                        • Own-label steals share within the chilled fish segment
                                                                                                                          • A reversal in fortunes for Birds Eye
                                                                                                                            • Only own-label escapes volume declines in tinned fish/shellfish
                                                                                                                              • 2017 is a big year for NPD, driven by private label
                                                                                                                                • A major premiumisation drive within frozen
                                                                                                                                  • Sainsbury’s encourages shoppers to try lesser-known species
                                                                                                                                    • Adspend hits a five-year high in 2017
                                                                                                                                    • Market Share

                                                                                                                                      • Own-label steals share within the chilled fish segment
                                                                                                                                        • A reversal in fortunes for Birds Eye
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 25: Leading brands’ sales and shares in the UK frozen seafood market, by value, 2016/17*
                                                                                                                                        • Stable volume sales for Young’s
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 26: Leading brands’ sales and shares in the UK frozen seafood market, by value and volume, 2014/15-2016/17
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 27: Leading manufacturers’ sales and shares in the UK frozen seafood market, by value and volume, 2014/15-2016/17
                                                                                                                                        • Only own-label escapes volume losses in tinned fish/shellfish
                                                                                                                                          • Princes is dealt the biggest blow
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 28: Leading brands’ sales and shares in the UK ambient seafood market, by value and volume, 2014/15-2016/17
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 29: Leading manufacturers’ sales and shares in the UK ambient seafood market, by value and volume, 2014/15-2016/17
                                                                                                                                        • Launch Activity and Innovation

                                                                                                                                          • 2017 is a big year for NPD, driven by private label
                                                                                                                                            • Nisa takes its place in own-label fish/shellfish
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 30: New product launches in the UK processed fish and shellfish market, by storage type, 2013-17
                                                                                                                                            • A major premiumisation drive within frozen
                                                                                                                                              • Iceland bolsters its premium range of fish and seafood
                                                                                                                                                • Saucy Fish Co makes its debut in the frozen aisle
                                                                                                                                                  • More launches for Young’s Gastro range
                                                                                                                                                    • Birds Eye expands its Inspirations range
                                                                                                                                                      • Relaunch activity from Birds Eye and Young’s
                                                                                                                                                        • Birds Eye improves its flagship Fish Finger brand
                                                                                                                                                          • Young’s rebrands its breaded fish range
                                                                                                                                                            • High levels of NPD activity in flavoured canned fish
                                                                                                                                                              • Sainsbury’s new range encourages shoppers to try lesser-known species
                                                                                                                                                                • Claims relating to ease of use hit a five-year high in 2017
                                                                                                                                                                • Advertising and Marketing Activity

                                                                                                                                                                  • Adspend hits a five-year high in 2017
                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 31: Total above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on fish and seafood, by segment, 2013-17
                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 32: Total above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on fish and seafood, by segment, 2013-17
                                                                                                                                                                  • Saucy Fish Co claims top spot with digital campaign
                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 33: Total above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on fish and seafood, by company (sorted by 2017), 2013-17
                                                                                                                                                                    • Birds Eye moves away from its masterbrand strategy
                                                                                                                                                                      • Captain Birdseye returns in a bid to tap consumers’ nostalgia
                                                                                                                                                                        • Birds Eye ups spend in 2017
                                                                                                                                                                          • Birds Eye celebrates imperfect parents with #Solidaritea campaign
                                                                                                                                                                            • Young’s pushes its Gastro brand for ‘date night’
                                                                                                                                                                              • Iceland highlights the benefits of frozen
                                                                                                                                                                                • Retailers highlight sourcing in ad campaigns
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Lidl’s mussels advert picks up MSC award
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Waitrose spotlights tuna provenance
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Tesco showcases its gold-trained fishmonger
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Princes launches ‘Love Canned Food’ campaign
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Nielsen Ad Intel coverage
                                                                                                                                                                                          • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                                                                                                                                            • 85% of adults eat fish or shellfish
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Spending power and presence of children influence usage
                                                                                                                                                                                                • A preference for tried and tested seafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Ease of cooking and lower prices are key selling points
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Concerns over canned fish processing
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Consumers expect sustainability, with ratings a popular concept
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Squeezed incomes will affect fish purchasing
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Frozen can benefit from an income squeeze
                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Fish can look to “flexitarian” NPD too
                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Canned fish can benefit more from scratch cooking
                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Usage of Fish and Shellfish

                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Fish and shellfish are eaten by 85% of adults
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 34: Eating of fish and shellfish, September 2017
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Frozen fish is the nation’s favourite
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 35: Usage frequency of fish and shellfish, September 2017
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Spending power has a big influence on fish eating
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Families are an important demographic for fish
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Shellfish is a rarer menu feature
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Choice Factors and Enticements for Fish and Shellfish

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • A preference for tried and tested seafood
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 36: Purchase habits of fish and shellfish, September 2017
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Ease of cooking is most likely to prompt trial
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Lower prices are a strong draw
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 37: Factors that would encourage trial of new types of fish/shellfish, September 2017
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • The older generation can be won over by support for British fisheries
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Young people want speed
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 38: Factors influencing choice of fish/shellfish, September 2017
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Behaviours Relating to Fish and Shellfish

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Concerns over canned fish processing
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • New campaign aims to improve the image of canned food
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • A focus on traditional processes and absence of preservatives should resonate
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Younger cohorts are more concerned than older
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 39: Behaviours relating to fish and shellfish, September 2017
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Consumers expect sustainability
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Keen interest in sustainability ratings, few have boycotted unsustainable species
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Onus remains on brands to put forward their credentials
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Farmed seafood is a case in point
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Expected Reactions to Income Squeeze

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Squeezed incomes will affect fish purchasing
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 40: Expected reactions to an income squeeze for fish and shellfish purchasing, September 2017
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Reduced promotional activity could hit volume sales
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Encouraging fish swaps has potential
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Frozen can benefit from an income squeeze
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Attitudes towards Fish and Shellfish

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Fish can look to “flexitarian” NPD too
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • 28% of people are reducing meat intake
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Strong interest in added vegetables in fish cakes
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 41: Attitudes towards fish and shellfish, September 2017
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Canned fish can benefit more from scratch cooking
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • The quality of frozen fish is deemed hard to ascertain
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations and Supporting Information

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Abbreviations
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Appendix – Market Size and Forecast

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Forecast methodology
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Appendix – Segment Performance

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 42: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK retail value sales of fish and shellfish, 2017-22
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 43: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK retail volume sales of fish and shellfish, 2017-22
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 44: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK retail value sales of chilled fish and shellfish, 2017-22
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 45: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK retail volume sales of chilled fish and shellfish, 2017-22
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 46: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK retail value sales of frozen fish and shellfish, 2017-22
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 47: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK retail volume sales of frozen fish and shellfish, 2017-22
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 48: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK retail value sales of ambient fish and shellfish, 2017-22
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 49: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK retail volume sales of ambient fish and shellfish, 2017-22
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Appendix – Launch Activity

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 50: New product launches in the UK processed fish and shellfish market, by company (top 15 in 2017), 2013-17
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 51: New product launches in the UK processed fish and shellfish market, by claim (top 15 in 2017), 2013-17

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Fish and Shellfish - UK - December 2017

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          US $2,552.20 (Excl.Tax)