Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Ice Age

March is here, and while spring and warm weather is on most people's minds, the frozen food industry is focused on the cold; March is National Frozen Food Month!

In 1984, Congress declared March 6 "Frozen Food Day" by Senate Joint Resolution 193, and authorized and requested President Reagan issue a proclamation upon the occasion. More recently, the National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Association made a commitment to frozen food companies and manufacturers to promote frozen foods during the month of March and increase year-round sales by:
  • Educating consumers on the attributes, benefits, and value in frozen foods
  • Encouraging family mealtime and healthy lifestyles by providing recipes and solutions for every meal occasion
  • Promoting convenience, quality, variety, and taste of frozen foods
  • Promoting new and innovative products within the industry
In 2010, Americans spent $56 billion on frozen food, up $13 billion since 2005. Today, 23 percent of home dinners are frozen entrées. With ever-growing profit, the industry has responded to consumer demand, developing better manufacturing processes, offering more ethnic choices, and creating healthier options.

While the freezer is certainly a hero this month, so is Clarence Birdseye, who is credited with inventing the flash-freeze method for foods in 1924 that we still use today. Birdseye's quick-freezing process led to the creation of 168 patents that included not only the freezing technique, but also packaging and related innovations. The process also led to the creation of Birds Eye, the Pinnacle Foods-owned maker of vegetables and frozen meals.

When you're eating a frozen waffle for breakfast, enjoying a frozen meal for lunch, or microwaving a frozen pizza for dinner this month, say thanks to frozen foods! Throughout March, learn more about the frozen food industry from the American Frozen Food Institute and read all about freezing and food safety.

Leave a comment and tell me: What are your favorite frozen foods?

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