“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…” Of course, that’s the beginning to Charles Dickens’ classic novel, A Tale of Two Cities. Oddly enough, it’s also a way to start describing life in the retail prepared meal, entrée and side dish categories.
The best news is that more consumers are opting for at-home eating. In its 2017 projections, The NPD Group notes, “Watch for the continued development of the ‘blended meal.’ Consumers are dining at home more, and they value fresh and authentic foods, but convenience remains an important part of the equation. People don’t always source meals entirely at home or away. Look for various components of ‘homemade’ meals to be sourced from items fully or partially prepared.”