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UK Pasta, Rice and Noodles market report

Everything you need to make the right decisions

Providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date information and analysis of the Pasta, Rice and Noodles market, its consumers and the major players who make up that market.

Market

Point of sale market data

In conjunction with IRi, extensive point of sale data shows you what consumers are spending their money on

Market Size

How big is the market today and what is our 5 year forecast? Includes both best & worst case scenarios

Market Segmentation

What are the different segments within the market and how are those individual segments performing?

Consumer

Consumer behaviors

What are consumers looking for, what drives their buying habits and what are their main purchase influencers?

Demographic breakdown

From iGen & Millennials to Baby Boomers & beyond. Who is spending money and what are they spending it on?

Representative sample

We gather our data from real-world consumers, selected to accurately reflect precise global demographics

Players

Company strategy

What are the key players doing, what has been successful for them and what was their marketing spend?

Product innovation

Using data from our Global New Product Database, what products were launched and how well were they perceived?

Opportunities

What happens next, which areas are likely to experience growth and what opportunities exist within the market?

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

Written by Anita Winther, a leading analyst in the Food & Drink sector, her extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

Convenience and value for money remain key strengths for the category and should support the market if inflation remains high and consumer incomes are squeezed. Meanwhile, encouraging new dish and cuisine pairings for pasta, rice and noodles remains key to establish new usage occasions and drive volume growth. Anita Winther
Research Analyst

Mintel has the answers you’re looking for

What are the key challenges facing the industry and how fast are its rates of growth? Who is the consumer and what do they want? Where are the opportunities, where are the risks and what lies ahead?

This report discusses the following key topics:

Products covered in this Report

This Report examines the UK retail market for pasta, rice and noodles. Mintel’s definition covers products sold through the grocery retail channel and direct to consumers and includes:

  • Pasta: dry, chilled, frozen, canned and pouched formats
  • Rice: dry, ready-to-heat (chilled and ambient) and frozen formats
  • Noodles: dry, ready-to-cook wet ambient, chilled and frozen formats
  • Instant hot snacks: instant dry noodle, pasta and rice snacks, instant ambient microwaveable pasta and rice snacks.

Excluded from this Report:

  • Pasta-, rice- and noodle-based ready meals (frozen and chilled), pasta salads, baby rice. Pasta sauces are also excluded. These are covered in Mintel’s Cooking Sauces and Pasta Sauces – UK, December 2017 Reports.

Sales via catering or foodservice establishments are excluded, although references and comparisons to these sectors may be made where relevant.

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What's included

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

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

          • The market
            • Struggles of pasta see market volumes fall
              • Inflation is expected to support value growth
                • Figure 1: Forecast of UK retail value sales of pasta, rice and noodles, 2012-22
              • Pasta values return to growth
                • Figure 2: UK retail value sales of pasta, rice and noodles, 2016 and 2017
              • Inflation puts pressure on operators and consumers
                • Healthy eating trends impact the market
                  • Companies and brands
                    • Own-label is the big winner across all segments
                      • Heinz sees sales fall in pasta
                        • Uncle Ben's Express Rice sales boosted by price cuts
                          • Strong growth of Naked Noodle continues
                            • Pot Noodle and Pasta ‘n’ Sauce enter the pot pasta market
                              • Health-focused NPD continues
                                • Advertising support continues to fall
                                  • Uncle Ben’s lead is rooted in trust, value and quality
                                    • The consumer
                                      • Pasta and rice are ingrained in Brits’ diets
                                        • Figure 3: Frequency of eating pasta, rice and noodles, November 2017
                                      • Younger consumers and families are key user groups
                                        • Usage of alternative types remains low
                                          • Figure 4: Types of pasta, rice and noodles eaten, November 2017
                                        • Multigrain and quick-to-cook microwave formats have potential in pasta
                                          • Figure 5: Behaviours relating to pasta, rice and noodles, November 2017
                                        • Instant noodle pots have lunch aisle potential
                                          • Figure 6: Attitudes towards pasta, rice and noodles, November 2017
                                        • Suiting the main dish is most important choice factor for side dishes
                                          • Figure 7: Important factors influencing choice of side dishes, November 2017
                                        • Potatoes’ strong image creates steep competition
                                          • Pasta, rice and noodles are viewed similarly
                                            • Figure 8: Correspondence analysis of qualities associated with selected types of side dishes, November 2017
                                          • What we think
                                          • Issues and Insights

                                            • Quick-to-cook microwave pasta is well placed to tap demand for convenience
                                              • The facts
                                                • The implications
                                                  • Stronger image as filling is needed to boost noodle pots’ lunch potential
                                                    • The facts
                                                      • The implications
                                                        • Opportunities to tap demand for five-a-day side dishes
                                                          • The facts
                                                            • The implications
                                                            • The Market – What You Need to Know

                                                              • Struggles of pasta see market volumes fall
                                                                • Inflation is expected to support value growth
                                                                  • Pasta values return to growth
                                                                    • Inflation puts pressure on operators and consumers
                                                                      • Healthy eating trends impact the market
                                                                      • Market Size and Forecast

                                                                        • Inflation supports value growth
                                                                          • Figure 9: UK retail value and volume sales of pasta, rice and noodles, 2012-22
                                                                        • The future
                                                                          • Figure 10: Forecast of UK retail value sales of pasta, rice and noodles, 2012-22
                                                                          • Figure 11: Forecast of UK retail volume sales of pasta, rice and noodles, 2012-22
                                                                        • Forecast methodology
                                                                        • Market Segmentation

                                                                          • Pasta values return to growth
                                                                            • Figure 12: UK retail value and volume sales of pasta, by segment, 2015-17
                                                                          • Rice sales continue to grow
                                                                            • Figure 13: UK retail value and volume sales of rice, by segment, 2015-17
                                                                          • Instant hot snacks and noodles see impressive growth
                                                                            • Figure 14: UK retail value and volume sales of instant hot snacks and noodles, by segment, 2015-17
                                                                        • Market Drivers

                                                                          • Cost pressures fuel inflation
                                                                            • Squeeze on household budgets returns
                                                                              • Impact of PHE’s starchy foods recommendations is limited
                                                                                • Carbohydrate avoidance is affecting the market
                                                                                  • Gluten-free continues to grow
                                                                                    • Growth in child population should underpin market
                                                                                      • Figure 15: Trends in the age structure of the UK population, 2012-17 and 2017-22
                                                                                  • Companies and Brands – What You Need to Know

                                                                                    • Own-label is the big winner across all segments
                                                                                      • Heinz sees sales fall in pasta
                                                                                        • Uncle Ben's Express Rice sales boosted by price cuts
                                                                                          • Strong growth of Naked Noodle continues
                                                                                            • Pot Noodle and Pasta ‘n’ Sauce enter the pot pasta market
                                                                                              • Health-focused NPD continues
                                                                                                • Advertising support continues to fall
                                                                                                  • Uncle Ben’s lead is rooted in trust, value and quality
                                                                                                  • Market Share

                                                                                                    • Own-label is the big winner
                                                                                                      • Heinz sees sales fall in pasta
                                                                                                        • Figure 16: Leading brands’ sales and shares in the UK pasta market, by value and volume, 2016 and 2017
                                                                                                      • Price cuts give Uncle Ben's Express Rice a lift
                                                                                                        • Figure 17: Leading brands’ sales and shares in the UK rice market, by value and volume, 2015/16 and 2016/17
                                                                                                      • Batchelors noodles range sees value growth return
                                                                                                        • Figure 18: Leading brands’ sales and shares in the UK noodles market, by value and volume, 2015/16 and 2016/17
                                                                                                      • Naked Noodle continues strong growth
                                                                                                        • Figure 19: Leading brands’ sales and shares in the UK pot snacks market, by value and volume, 2015/16 and 2016/17
                                                                                                    • Launch Activity and Innovation

                                                                                                      • Relaunches see pasta grow share of launches
                                                                                                        • Figure 20: Share of new product launches in the UK pasta, rice and noodles market, by segment, 2014-17
                                                                                                      • Batchelors Super Noodles moves into instant pot snacks
                                                                                                        • Pot Noodle and Pasta ‘n’ Sauce enter the pasta snack pot market
                                                                                                          • Cauli Rice rebrands as Fullgreen as it moves beyond cauliflower
                                                                                                            • Gluten-free launches remain high
                                                                                                              • Tilda launches Super Grains variants
                                                                                                                • Santa Maria brings Latin American flavours to the rice category
                                                                                                                  • Heinz launch stevia-sweetened Hoops
                                                                                                                    • Heinz and Fiddes Payne extend their licensed kids’ portfolios
                                                                                                                    • Advertising and Marketing Activity

                                                                                                                      • Advertising support continues to fall
                                                                                                                        • Figure 21: Total above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on rice, pasta and noodles, 2014-17
                                                                                                                      • Mars remains the biggest spender
                                                                                                                        • Figure 22: Total above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on pasta, rice and noodles, by top 5 advertisers (sorted by 2017), 2014-17
                                                                                                                      • Unilever goes operatic to support Pot Pasta launch
                                                                                                                        • Cauli Rice makes TV debut
                                                                                                                          • Tilda and Laila launch charitable drives
                                                                                                                            • Barilla looks to sport to drive engagement
                                                                                                                              • Naked Noodle raises the fashion stakes at London Fashion Week
                                                                                                                                • Nielsen Ad Intel coverage
                                                                                                                                • Brand Research

                                                                                                                                    • Brand map
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 23: Attitudes towards and usage of selected brands, January 2018
                                                                                                                                    • Key brand metrics
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 24: Key metrics for selected brands, January 2018
                                                                                                                                    • Brand attitudes: High trust in Uncle Ben’s is rooted in perceptions of quality
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 25: Attitudes, by brand, January 2018
                                                                                                                                    • Brand personality: Pot Noodle and Batchelors Super Noodles have a lead as fun
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 26: Brand personality – Macro image, January 2018
                                                                                                                                    • Napolina and Tilda score highest as authentic
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 27: Brand personality – Micro image, January 2018
                                                                                                                                    • Brand analysis
                                                                                                                                      • Napolina is widely seen as an authentic and traditional brand with family appeal
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 28: User profile of Napolina, January 2018
                                                                                                                                      • Tilda enjoys the strongest natural image
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 29: User profile of Tilda, January 2018
                                                                                                                                      • Uncle Ben’s popularity is rooted in accessibility, quality and trust
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 30: User profile of Uncle Ben’s, January 2018
                                                                                                                                      • Low levels of usage hamper perceptions of Barilla
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 31: User profile of Barilla, January 2018
                                                                                                                                      • Batchelors Super Noodles lags as innovative and diverse
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 32: User profile of Batchelors Super Noodles, January 2018
                                                                                                                                      • Pot Noodle’s top associations are with accessible and fun
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 33: User profile of Pot Noodle, January 2018
                                                                                                                                    • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                                                                                      • Pasta and rice are ingrained in Brits’ diets
                                                                                                                                        • Younger consumers and families are key user groups
                                                                                                                                          • Usage of alternative types remains low
                                                                                                                                            • Multigrain has potential in pasta
                                                                                                                                              • Quick-to-cook microwave pasta garners interest
                                                                                                                                                • Instant noodle pots have lunch aisle potential
                                                                                                                                                  • Suiting the main dish is most important choice factor for side dishes
                                                                                                                                                    • Potatoes’ strong image creates steep competition
                                                                                                                                                      • Pasta, rice and noodles are viewed similarly
                                                                                                                                                      • Usage of Pasta, Rice and Noodles

                                                                                                                                                        • Pasta and rice are ingrained in the British diet
                                                                                                                                                          • Noodles are eaten by 70%
                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 34: Usage of pasta, rice, noodles, couscous and grains, November 2017
                                                                                                                                                          • Half of Brits eat dry pasta weekly
                                                                                                                                                            • Younger consumers and families are key user groups
                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 35: Frequency of eating pasta, rice, noodles, couscous and grains, November 2017
                                                                                                                                                            • Two in five eat wholegrain pasta or rice
                                                                                                                                                              • Usage of alternative types remains low
                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 36: Types of pasta, rice and noodles eaten, November 2017
                                                                                                                                                            • Behaviours Relating to Pasta, Rice and Noodles

                                                                                                                                                              • Multigrain has potential in pasta
                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 37: Behaviours relating to pasta, rice and noodles, November 2017
                                                                                                                                                                • Quick-to-cook microwave pasta garners interest
                                                                                                                                                                • Attitudes towards Pasta, Rice and Noodles

                                                                                                                                                                  • Spotlighting high vegetable content should appeal in filled pasta
                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 38: Attitudes towards pasta, rice and noodles, November 2017
                                                                                                                                                                  • Instant noodle pots have lunch aisle potential…
                                                                                                                                                                    • …but need to work on fillingness
                                                                                                                                                                    • Choice Factors for Side Dishes

                                                                                                                                                                      • Cracking main dish pairings is key to growing usage
                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 39: Important factors influencing the choice of side dishes, November 2017
                                                                                                                                                                      • Convenience trumps low price
                                                                                                                                                                        • A third look for sides that count towards the five-a-day
                                                                                                                                                                        • Qualities Associated with Types of Side Dishes

                                                                                                                                                                          • Potatoes’ strong image creates steep competition
                                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 40: Qualities associated with selected types of side dishes, November 2017
                                                                                                                                                                          • Pasta, rice and noodles are viewed similarly
                                                                                                                                                                            • Emerging world cuisines could boost the image of rice as versatile
                                                                                                                                                                              • Convenience formats should boost familiarity for beans/lentils/pulses
                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 41: Correspondence analysis of qualities associated with selected types of side dishes, November 2017
                                                                                                                                                                              • Methodology
                                                                                                                                                                              • Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations and Supporting Information

                                                                                                                                                                                  • Abbreviations
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Consumer research methodology
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Market Size and Forecast

                                                                                                                                                                                      • Forecast methodology
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 42: Total UK retail value sales of pasta, rice and noodles, best- and worst-case forecast, 2017-22
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 43: Total UK retail volume sales of pasta, rice and noodles, best- and worst-case forecast, 2017-22
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – Market Share

                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 44: Leading manufacturers’ sales and shares in the UK pasta market, by value and volume, 2016 and 2017
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 45: Leading manufacturers’ sales and shares in the UK rice market, by value and volume, 2015/16 and 2016/17
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 46: Leading manufacturers’ sales and shares in the UK noodles market, by value and volume, 2015/16 and 2016/17
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 47: Leading manufacturers’ sales and shares in the UK pot snacks market, by value and volume, 2015/16 and 2016/17
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – Launch Activity and Innovation

                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 48: Share of new product launches in the UK pasta, rice and noodles market, by top 10 companies (sorted by 2017), 2014-17
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 49: Share of new product launches in the UK pasta, rice and noodles market, by brands and private label, 2014-17
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 50: Share of new product launches in the UK pasta, rice and noodles market, by top 10 claims, 2014-17
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 51: Share of wholegrain launches in the UK pasta market, 2014-17