Slow growth in grocery sector

25 August, 2015

“Sluggish growth” has been recorded in the British grocery market in the 12 weeks to 16 August 2015 with Sainsbury's the only one of the big four in growth.

The latest figures from Kantar Worldpanel show a 0.9% increase in sales compared to one year ago.

Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, said: “Industry growth of around or below 1% has now persisted since summer 2014 and has become the new normal. Despite the accelerating British economy, like-for like grocery prices are still falling, with a representative basket of everyday items now 1.7% cheaper than in 2014.”

Iceland has seen sales increase by 3.4% following efforts to create a more premium image for frozen food, as well as new store openings including its Food Warehouse format, which has seen more shoppers through the doors. Its market share, however, remains flat at 2%.

Waitrose had a good period, with its Pick Your Own Offers promotions helping to drive growth of 3.7%. The Co-operative has also seen growth for the second month in a row, with sales up by 1.1% on last year.

It was another successful period for the discounters, with growth at Aldi accelerating to 18.0%. Lidl’s sales have also risen, up 12.8%, taking its market share to a new high of 4.1%. 

McKevitt added: “As anticipated, Asda has retaken its position as Britain’s second-largest supermarket, despite a fall in sales of 2.5% and a 0.6 percentage point fall in market share. The retailer’s greater focus on non-food items means its market share is traditionally higher in the summer, and it is expected that Sainsbury’s will again become the number two retailer towards Christmas.”

Sainsbury’s was the only one of the big four to see an increase in sales, up by 0.1%, which represents its first growth since March. Sales at Tesco fell by 0.9%, while Morrisons’ increased decline of 1.1% this month reflects a tougher comparison against last year, when a widespread voucher promotion was in place.





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