Frozen fruit & vegetable consumption has increased because of the growing consumer trend for convenience and ready-made food supplies. The major European importers are UK, Germany and France, while largest exporters are Belgium and Poland.
The demand for frozen blueberries private label is increasing because consumers are interested in natural, gluten-free, and vegan food options. It is influenced strongly because of the trend towards smoothies preparation, especially at home.
Besides freezing the fruits & veggies undergo washing, peeling, cutting, grading, blanching, and more depending on the kind of product. In quick freezing process the core temperature of the fruit is -18°C.
Quick-frozen fruits & veggies are presented as –
- Crumbled or crushed fruit
- Blended in different styles
- Whole & free flowing
- In block form [non-free glowing]
- Cut in variety of shapes
Optional ingredients that can be used for freezing specific fruits & veggies are –
- Sugar forms like dextrose, sucrose, glucose syrup, fructose, invert sugar, etc.
- Aromatic herbs
- Vegetable garnishes
- Vegetable stock
- Good and free from inessential matters
- Reasonably uniform color and relevant characteristic
- No foreign odor or flavor
- Berry kinds of fruits need to be in perfect shape
- Proper grading and cutting style
The standards for different veggies and fruits are different. Make sure to read the standards for quality specifications online.
- Fruit name
- Word ‘frozen’ or ‘quick frozen’
- Ingredient name
- Style [block, crumble, IQF whole, etc.]
- Cutting style [halved, trimmed, chopped, diced, etc.]
The product specification must even include the crop variety and year.
Polythene bags, paper bags, and layered carton boxes are common packaging used for frozen fruits & veggies. Layered carton boxes get packed on pallets using polythene foils. Cardboard boxes need to be durable and sealed to deal with the pallet weight during lengthy storage. Packaging size will differ as per buyer’s request.
Specific export requirements for frozen fruit & veggies in European market
Food safety – The maximum residue levels in several pesticides applicable in the frozen fruits and veggies are defined.
Labelling needs – Product labelling has to comply with European Union Regulation. It needs to clearly define origin, nutrition, allergen, and minimum font size.
Packing requirements – The repacking of frozen fruit & veggie needs to be conducted under controlled temperature [0°C to 5°C]. After repacking, the packages need to be replaced in freezing chambers under -18°C.
End market prices
For frozen fruits & veggies the end market prices differ. They depend on the producing country, fruit type, and quality. You can assume it to be 25% more than the retail price, which represent the cost, insurance, & freight [CIF].