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1 Market overview

1.1 Introduction

Deep-freezing is a process that amounts to rapidly lowering the temperature of a foodstuff, fresh and sanitation, up to -18 °C core temperature . Freezing, a similar but less efficient process, offers slower cooling and a more efficient cooling process lower quality rendering on the plate.

There are several techniques to freeze a product:

  • Contact freezing reserved for thin feeds (e.g. filleted fish, is made by introducing a feed between two plates in which a fluid circulates at -35 °C ).
  • The forced air circulation technique, more suitable for small products such as vegetables, consists of placing the products in tunnels where very cold air (-35 °C) circulates at very high speed.
  • The immersion method adapted to irregularly shaped products, which consists of immersing the food in a very low temperature fluid such as the liquid nitrogen .
  • Individual Freezing or IQF (Individually Quick Frozen) involves immersing food in liquid gas. More expensive, it is more suitable for fragile products.

These complex industrial techniques require that the core temperature of the products must always be kept below -18°C, which means that distributors must be able to offer a real "temperature control" service technical challenge.

As the Portuguese frozen food market is highly competitive and growing, supply is tending to diversify. It can be divided into several segments: prepared meals, snacks The following products are available: vegetables, fruit and vegetables, meat, fish and seafood, desserts and soups, sauces and herbs

The Portuguese market is affected by trends that can also be observed at the global level, but has some specific features. In fact, according to Vânia Cabreiro As a Nielsen senior consultant client, 31% of Portuguese people admit that work-life balance is their main concern, which creates interest in products that are easy to cook and very often quite cheap. In addition, as health and environmental concerns become more and more important, we can expect vegetarian product segments to grow strongly in the coming years, as will seafood, which is driven by the Portuguese gastronomic tradition. Today, fish accounts for 34% of sales by volume.

Thus, the main challenges for the frozen food industry in Portugal will be to extend the offer to healthy products, which appeal to an increasingly demanding clientele, while maintaining the qualities that already attract many consumers: convenience and more affordable price.

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Companies quoted in this study

This study contains a complete overview of the companies in the market, with the latest figures and news for each company. :

Casa dos congelados
Paulo Machado&Irmão
Grupo Biofresco

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