UK food-to-go market forecast for 4.1% growth in 2023

According to the latest Food to Go Market Report 2023 from industry research analyst Lumina Intelligence, the industry is expected to grow by 4.1% this year, reaching a total value of £22.2 billion. The report highlights that spending increased by 12% during the 12 weeks ending 26th December 2021, driven by inflation and the easing of COVID-19 restrictions. Although more consumers are having food-to-go occasions this year, they are doing so less frequently, due mainly to the mounting cost of living pressures and the increase in prices.

66% of consumers are ‘very sustainably conscious’ according to the report.

It appears that sustainability is also an ever increasingly important factor in consumer choices. 66% of consumers are ‘very sustainably conscious’ according to the report. These environmental concerns and a desire for more sustainable diets has driven an increase in vegan seafood. The likes of Wagamama and Co-op have recently introduced offerings in this category, paving the way for fish and chip operators to capture a potential opportunity for increasing their reach towards these sustainably conscious consumers.

The retail industry has seen the biggest increase in food-to-go occasions year-on-year, whilst QSRs have seen the biggest decline, as inflation leads to higher prices and consumers opt for retail offerings instead.

It’s unsurprising that consumers are becoming more value-driven. Cost of living pressure and rising food prices have led to less discretionary spending power and value scrutiny increasing as consumers opt for cheaper meal options. Operators can tap into the demand here for value by offering meal deals to compete with food-to-go retail offerings.

The report also noted that food-only purchases have increased by 4.2 percentage points year-on-year, as consumers look to minimise spend by foregoing drink purchases.

Find out more in The Lumina Intelligence Food to Go Market Report 2023.


As the weather warms up and the summer finally approaches, hospitality business owners have plenty on their plate to prepare for the expected increase in footfall. To make the most of the busy summer season and ensure the most is made of the opportunities for increased revenue, it’s important to get ready with the right tools in place.
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