ConAgra Foods Inc. and Kantar Retail have collaborated on a Web-based tool to help retailers optimize their frozen food portfolios while predicting the dollar sales impact as a result of those changes. The "Frozen Accelerator" analyzes merchandising, assortment and shelving performance, and then suggests an effective plan for both frozen food brands and retailers.
In developing the tool, ConAgra and Kantar analyzed three years of data in the frozen food department to determine the traits of top-performing retailers. These principles were further broken down across single-serve meals, multi-serve meals and frozen desserts. The research aided the companies in identifying best-in-class principles, among them the timing and frequency of merchandising, the proper product assortment, and how products should be displayed on shelves. With these principles incorporated into the Frozen Accelerator, the tool can review account performances, create a plan and determine the financial impact of applying that plan.
"This tool is an example of how ConAgra Foods is bringing best-in-class thinking to a challenging retail environment," said Andrew Carnazzo, director, category strategy at Omaha, Neb.-based ConAgra, whose frozen brands include Banquet, Healthy Choice and Marie Callender's. "The Frozen Accelerator will identify the opportunities in the frozen food aisle where brands and our customers can win and deliver an effective plan."
"The user can, with just a few clicks, compare how well their category practices compare to the best-in-class practices of the industry across shelving, merchandising and assortment," added Robert Osher, director of applications for Wilton, Conn.-based Kantar Retail. "In addition, the Frozen Accelerator quantifies the impact to the category bottom line of aligning to these best practices, and is invaluable for any retailer or manufacturer planning their category spend accordingly while determining the best course of action for category improvement."
The creation of a report through the Frozen Accelerator represents the first phase of the partnership between ConAgra and its retail customers. After the diagnostic tool has been reviewed, the company's cross-functional teams within category leadership, shopper insights, shopper marketing and sales work in tandem to construct and execute a more effective approach for growth for retail partners.
New Frozen Retail Content Catalog Launching
As well as the Frozen Accelerator, ConAgra is launching a new Frozen Retail Content Catalog this month. The catalog will give customers access to seasonal consumer communication such as myth-busting frozen food facts, benefits of frozen food, and stories behind the products, keeping frozen meals uppermost in consumers’ minds so they’ll shop the frozen section all year round.
The company's "Rethink Frozen" program, which includes the Frozen Retailer Content Catalog, recently won a Sabre award for its creativity and results.