Ready meals are used all around the globe, and Australia is no different. These meals are the ones that only need you to heat them, and they will be ready for consumption, like frozen meat and vegetables. Ready meals have seen a constant increase in their usage in Australia over the years with a compound annual growth rate of 5.9%, and the market revenue of ready meals is expected to grow to AUD 1.6 billion in 2024, which was only about AUD 0.9 billion in 2013 (1). That’s roughly double!
The increase in consumption of ready meals can be attributed to the different reasons, some of which are stated below:
Dual-Income Families: A dual-income family is the one where both parents work to earn. As the world is progressing and various opportunities are being created, more and more members of a single-family are trying to avail them and contribute to the overall family income. The percentage of dual-income families in Australia has increased from 53% in 1996 to 61% in 2016 (2), which is expected to further increase with time. That’s why it is becoming harder for people to take out time only to cook a healthy meal for the day, and they are moving towards the easier and faster option, ready meals.
Convenience is the new black: With the advancements in technology and new inventions improving the quality of life, people have started to change their lifestyles, making everything ready at their disposal. And they want their food the same way. Life is becoming very fact-paced, especially in urban cities. Australia has around 86.12% of its population living in urban areas (3), and ready meals are a very important part of their diets as they can be ‘cooked’ without investing much time and still provide the necessary nutrients required for a healthy human diet.
Effects of the Pandemic – COVID’19: Just like the rest of the world, Australia was also affected by the deadly Corona virus. Since social distancing was necessary to reduce the chances of getting affected by this virus, Australia imposed a nationwide lockdown. And as people were confined to their homes and it wasn’t very feasible to go outside after every few days just to get food items to cook, most people turned to the other viable option available which was, ready meals. These meals can stay in the freezers for more than three months if their packing isn’t opened, and so, they proved very beneficial for their consumers in the times of the pandemic, and their consumption increased.
New tastes and flavours at hand: Food and its flavours have evolved a lot ever since the advent of humanity, and humans have come up with uncountable different eatables’ tastes. But it usually takes a lot of time and effort to cook and make a food item with the flavour someone likes, and it becomes even harder to try something new by cooking yourself. Ready meals production companies know this, and this is why there is a vast variety of ready meal food items with different flavours and tastes available. From meat to vegetables, pizzas to salads, macaroni and cheese to even full dinner dishes, like Australian chicken parmigiana, the options are so many, and the only steps required to make them are; buy it, heat it, and eat it. Isn’t it so easy! And that’s why the popularity of ready meals are increasing in Australia with each passing day.
But there’s a catch! Although the usage of ready meals is increasing in Australia, these ready meals can become harmful for the consumers if they aren’t packed correctly. Ready meals production companies have to make sure that the meals that they dispatch to the shops should have the proper packaging. The packaging doesn’t only mean the way the food item will be ‘covered’ inside the wrap, but also the material used in the wrap and the different conditions that are taken care of while wrapping, such as the temperature.
Check out our post on why do we need food packaging to understand more about the reasons and benefits of packaging. To provide the perfect packaging for the ready meals that you will be consuming, we at SelectEquip provide various solutions. We have systems that are completely automated so that there is no error to ensure the complete safety of your ready meals packaging. Furthermore, the ready meal food items aren’t only hard and solid, but there can also be mushy, like mashed potatoes, and even in liquid forms, such as soups. Our solutions make sure that the packaging matches with the ready meal being packed and it can reach its consumer in the way it was supposed to be.
Click here to get your ready meals packed in the right way!