Grocery market continues to grow below inflation

Figures from Kantar Worldpanel show that the grocery market has continued to grow below the current inflation figures, highlighting the lingering caution of many shoppers, which has helped boost the market share of the discounters.

In the 12 weeks to 25 November, Aldi continued it upward trajectory, growing its market share by 27.3% to 3% of the entire grocery market. The discounter, which is planning to open another 40 stores in the next 12 months, already has 10% more shoppers than a year ago and enjoyed a 17% uplift in the value of each shopping basket.  
 
Lidl, Iceland and Waitrose also enjoyed good growth, gaining share of around 11%, 9.2% and 7.5% respectively, while of the big four, only Sainsbury’s market share grew, to 16.9%, with year-on-year growth of 4.7%. Tesco’s market share fell from  31% to 30.7%, with Asda down to 17.3% from 17.4% last year, and Morrisons experiencing a year-on-year decline.

Edward Garner, director at Kantar Worldpanel, said: “These share losses are particularly acute for Morrisons, which has experienced a sales decline of 1.1%, bringing its share down from 12.3% a year ago to 11.7% now. The online grocery channel is currently growing at nearly 20% per annum, and Morrisons’ absence from this channel will be holding it back.”

BRC-KPMG’s figure for November warned that, on a three-month basis, food sales declined in real terms, with November proving a “cautious month of wait-and-see”, and retailers becoming reliant on a last-minute rush.

David McCorquodale, head of retail at KPMG, said: “The like-for-like indicators in food and non-food are positive, but only just, against a weak set of comparatives last year. It appears consumers know they have to spend before Christmas, but are holding off for as long as they can to see if there might be bargains available in the next few weeks.

Research undertaken by Brand View, a provider of real-time price and promotion tracking, found that the overall price of turkey products in the multiples had increased an average of 8% from last year’s prices, although it conceded it was able to find whole turkeys being sold at the same price as last year.

However, Waitrose reported a surge in sales of ready-prepared turkeys through its food ordering service, with orders up 134% on the same time last year, while overall turkey orders also rose by 24%. The retailers also reported that alternative meat orders had risen, with venison up 42%, lamb by 57% and pork by 29%.

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