What You’ll Find in Your Supermarket Prepared Food Will Shock You

Mar 16, 2016 11:28 PM EDT | By Rhea Penaflor

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You go to a grocery store and you also see a variety of supermarket prepared foods from healthy to not-so-healthy food that you can choose from. Then you decide to buy the healthy food as labeled. Are you sure that you're getting the right, fresh, organic and nutritional food? Let's find out.

In 2010, Packaged Facts entitled "Prepared Foods and Ready-to-Eat Foods at Retail: The New Competition to Foodservice" noted grocery's gain amid the restaurant industry's recessionary struggles. As consumers shifted from spending at restaurants to saving dollars and dining at home, supermarkets pounced with more diverse ready-to-eat offerings, competitive prices, and one-stop-shop positioning.  This could explain why Supermarket Prepared Food gained so much popularity among grocers and consumers alike. Consumers opt for supermarket prepared food thinking it's fresh and healthy. They also don't need to go somewhere else, instead, they have to schedule it doing grocery and buying prepared food in one go.

Packaged Facts is a division of MarketResearch.com, publishes market intelligence on a range of consumer market topics, including consumer goods and retailing, foods and beverages, demographics, pet products and services, and financial products. Packaged Facts also offers a full range of custom research services. Consumer Reports on the other hand, publishes reviews and comparisons of consumer products and services based on reporting and results from its in-house testing laboratory and survey research center. 

Consumer Reports explains the unsavory truths that you find in your supermarket prepared food. According to a survey of almost 63,000 Consumer Reports subscribers, more than half buy meals at the fresh prepared-food counter of the grocery store. In fact, preapred meals have become almost a $29 billion-a-year business, growing twice as fast as overall grocery store sales. Consumer Reports concludes that convenience is the reason of this trend woth consumers having the desire to eat healthy.

Consultant to the food industry Karen Buch, R.D.N., L.D.N., said that after spending many years as a dietitian, she found out that consumers want the time savings they could get from a fast-food restaurant, but fresher, healthier meal options and more customized choices.

In summary, these are Consumer Reports findings on what your supermarket prepared food contain:

1. The label "Freshly Made" may not at all be fresh;

2. Too much salt;

3. Void of nutritional information;

4. No suggested serving size or wrong portion of serving; and

5. It is actually more costly than you think.

The next time you do your grocery again, think hard if you still want to grab some supermarket prepared food.

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