A Preview of Frozen IQ Event Hosted by FMI and AFFI

By: Rick Stein, Vice President, Industry Relations, FMI

The frozen food industry, a cornerstone of modern convenience and culinary innovation, is gearing up for the upcoming FMI and American Frozen Food Institute's (AFFI) Frozen IQ event, June 3-5, 2024 in Fort Worth, Texas. Set to serve as a nexus for professionals to discuss the latest trends, challenges and opportunities within the frozen food sector, Frozen IQ focuses on innovation and sustainability. This year's event promises to be an exciting glimpse into the future.

Adnan Durrani, Founder and CEO of Saffron Road shared how he sees Frozen IQ as an amazing opportunity for FMI and AFFI leaders to collaborate on the pressing issues in the industry.

Macro Trends and Consumer Shifts

David Portalatin and Sally Lyons Wyatt will start the Frozen IQ conversations by delving into macro trends currently influencing consumer behavior on food consumption and purchases. These trends are crucial for industry professionals to understand as they navigate the shifting landscape and compare retail to food service. Frozen food manufacturers and retailers must understand where and how consumers choose to eat, given changes in dining habits due to the pandemic and evolving consumer preferences.

Daypart Consumption: The focal point will be on consumer shifts across different dayparts, from breakfast to late-night snacks. Attendees can expect to gain insights into which dayparts are seeing growth in frozen food consumption and how companies can capitalize on these trends.

Tech Integration: Technology will integrate into the frozen food aisle seamlessly. Smart packaging that monitors freshness, online ordering with doorstep delivery and meal kits tailored to dietary needs will be hot topics. The focus extends beyond the food's content and encompasses how consumers will interact with it in the coming years.

Global Influences: The frozen food market is set to become more globally inspired. Attendees will learn about exotic flavors and ingredients in freezer aisles, reflecting our increasingly interconnected culinary world. From Indian spices to Japanese fusion, the diversity of options is expected to expand.

Sustainability: A growth imperative sustainability will be a core principle guiding the future of the frozen food industry at Frozen IQ. Attendees will discuss reducing waste, energy efficiency and responsible sourcing.

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Reducing Food Waste: Experts will share strategies for minimizing food waste throughout the supply chain. From improved logistics to consumer education on proper storage, the industry will commit to fighting waste.

Packaging Innovations: Packaging will play a crucial role in sustainability. The event will showcase new biodegradable materials and designs to reduce plastic waste. Companies explore compostable trays, recyclable films, and minimalist packaging without compromising on quality or convenience.

Farm to Freezer Transparency: Consumers want to know where their food comes from. Frozen food producers will respond with transparency initiatives, providing detailed information about sourcing, farming practices, and nutritional content. This transparency will build trust and encourage more sustainable farming methods.

Frozen IQ 2024 will be a testament to the vibrancy and resilience of the frozen food industry. By embracing innovation and sustainability, it will not just be keeping pace with consumer demands — it will be setting the standard for the future of food.

The event will be a reminder that the frozen food aisle is no longer just a place for quick meals. It will be a hub of creativity, sustainability and delicious possibilities. We can't wait to see what the future holds for this dynamic industry.

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