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UK Insights

Autumn chill puts Sunday lunch back on the menu

Fraser McKevitt

Head of Retail and Consumer Insight

Shoppers 16.10.2018 / 08:00


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The latest grocery market share data from Kantar Worldpanel shows UK consumers returned to comfort food in September.

Shoppers have returned to seasonal favourites as supermarket spending cools off, according to the latest figures from Kantar Worldpanel, published today for the 12 weeks to 7 October 2018. Overall sales grew 3.2% compared to the same 12 weeks last year. Though this is a slight slowdown from the highs reached during 2018’s hot summer, sales are above 3.0% for the fourth period in a row and well ahead of the average market growth rate over the past five years, 1.7%.  

Consumer spending often slows in early autumn, after the excesses of summer barbeques and before the festive season kicks off. The arrival of colder weather and darker evenings has inspired consumers to embrace hearty comfort foods and stock up on Sunday roast staples; shoppers spent £51 million on whole chickens, £62 million on roasting joints and £4 million on Yorkshire puddings in September alone.

Christmas will be here before we know it and some families seem to be getting into the spirit already – 8% of households bought mince pies last month, spending a total of £4 million with 70 days still to go before the big day.

In the 12 weeks to 7 October, Aldi increased sales by 15.1%. This is the fastest rate of growth since January 2018, supported by its fresh and chilled aisles, with sales of dairy products up 24% and fresh poultry up 29% compared with last year. Some 6% of Aldi’s sales came from premium own-label lines including its Specially Selected range – a higher proportion than any other supermarket – and its growing number of stores helped it increase its market share by 0.8 percentage points to 7.6%.

Lidl attracted 5% more shoppers through its doors compared with the same period last year and persuaded visitors to spend an extra 55 pence per trip – a greater increase than any of its rivals – helping the store achieve sales growth of 10.0% and a market share of 5.6%.

With sales up 7.0%, Co-op was the only other bricks and mortar retailer to gain market share. An additional 265,000 households visited Co-op over the past 12 weeks. They were particularly drawn to its own-label lines, buying 10% more of these ranges than this time last year which accounted for more than half of Co-op’s total sales.

Over the past 12 weeks, sales at Tesco were up 0.9% while its market share fell by 0.6 percentage points to 27.4%. Despite widespread interest in the September launch of its discounter concept, Jack’s, the small number of stores planned means it won’t impact on Tesco’s market share without a significant expansion. Within the main supermarket ‘Exclusively at Tesco’ lines continue to be a real bright spot, with 41% of British shoppers buying one of these products during the last 12 weeks, spending a combined £102 million.

Both Yorkshire-based retailers, Asda and Morrisons, grew sales by 2.4% over the past 12 weeks. Asda continued to focus on its own-label lines and overall sales increased both online and in store. In contrast, Morrisons generated growth by selling more branded items, while cutting back on promotions faster than any other retailer. Despite this, Morrisons still promotes more than any other supermarket, with 45% of sales made on some kind of deal. Sainsbury’s grew by 0.6%, achieving a market share of 15.4%, down 0.4 percentage points compared to last year.

Growing ahead of the market, Ocado and Iceland sales were up by 7.5% and 4.8% respectively. Meanwhile, Waitrose sales grew by 0.1%, with market share down by 0.1 percentage points to 5.2%.

Source : Kantar Worldpanel

Editor's Notes

Please note: Kantar Worldpanel supermarket share data has been reworked as of March 2018, effective from the release covering the 12 w/e 25 February 2018.  This is part of an ongoing process to ensure we maintain the best and most accurate read of the grocery market. The change has had a marginal impact on retailer shares and reported performance; growth trends remain unaffected as historical data has been reworked for consistency.

For reworked 12 w/e historical data please contact us.

Please note that four week ending or six week ending retailer share data should not be used in media reporting. The 12 week ending data stated in this release covers a longer time period which means it is a superior indicator of retailer performances and trends.

For all publicly-quoted Worldpanel data, users of our research (including media) must ensure that data is sourced to ‘Kantar Worldpanel’.

These findings are based on Kantar Worldpanel data for the 12 weeks to 7 October 2018. Kantar Worldpanel monitors the take home grocery purchasing habits of 30,000 demographically representative households across Great Britain. Kantar Worldpanel grocery market share data includes all expenditure through store tills, excluding petrol and in-store concessions. All data discussed in the above announcement is based on the value of items being bought by these consumers. 

An update on inflation: 

Grocery inflation now stands at +2.0%* for the 12 week period ending 7 October 2018. Prices have been rising since the 12 weeks to 1 January 2017, following a period of grocery price deflation which ran for 30 consecutive periods from September 2014 to December 2016.  Prices are rising fastest in markets such as cola, butter and sparkling wine.

*This figure is based on over 75,000 identical products compared year-on-year in the proportions purchased by shoppers and therefore represents the most authoritative figure currently available. It is a ‘pure’ inflation measure in that shopping behaviour is held constant between the two comparison periods – shoppers are likely to achieve a lower personal inflation rate if they trade down or seek out more offers.

 

Retailer growth figures reported by Kantar Worldpanel relate to overall take home sales, and so include the impact of store openings or closures. Like-for-like sales change is not measured or reported. Calculating like-for-like sales requires a detailed knowledge of store openings and extensions which is information held accurately only by individual retailers.

Kantar Worldpanel will only support data that is published in the context we have presented it and our own interpretation of these findings. Our commentary is based upon our own data and information in the public domain. We cannot be held responsible for any other interpretation of these findings.

 

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