In order to reduce food waste, frozen food brands and governments need to better educate consumers on the health and sustainability benefits of frozen foods to overcome negative perceptions and drive greater usage of the freezer, according to a study released by GlobalData, Boston, Mass.

“Our recent survey brings attention to the low perceptions consumers have of frozen food compared to fresh,” says Melanie Felgate, consumer analyst. “Although frozen food is seen as convenient and good value for money, the majority of consumers do not perceive it to be healthy, natural or fresh.”

Just 10% of consumers associate frozen food as being “healthy” compared to 45% for fresh food, according to the survey.

The aim of the new Love Food Hate Waste campaign, launched in March by the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP), London, is to encourage British consumers to use their freezer to reduce the amount they throw away.

“The freezer has potential to play a much bigger role in reducing food waste,” Felgate adds. “In many cases food such as fruit and vegetables can often be as (if not more) nutritious when frozen. Less emphasis should be placed on buying fresh products that goes off quickly.”