Debut for natural ready-meal line

Love Foods, a start-up food company, is tapping into consumer concerns over artificial additives with the launch of a range of 'healthier' ready meals.

Love Foods is promoting its range of vegetarian Thai, Chinese and Indian meals as 100% natural, with no preservatives, colourings, additives or genetically modified constituents. The products, which will be sold in Somerfield, contain soya instead of meat, fish or egg products.

The company claims that most ready meals contain modified starch, pork gelatine, citric acid, sulphur dioxide and hydrogenated vegetable oil.

It predicts that its range, which it describes as 'championing a ready-meal revolution', will demonstrate that the products can taste good without the use of additives or 'cheap meat'.

Sales of chilled ready meals rose 33% between 2001 and 2004 to £1.4bn, according to Mintel, whereas the frozen ready-meals sector dipped 13% last year to £603m.

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