Supermarket sales slowing down

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Supermarket sales have slowed to a revenue growth of 0.2 per cent compared with last year, according to the latest grocery share figures from Kantar Worldpanel, the latest figures cover the 12 weeks ending April 26 2015.

Fraser McKevitt, the head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, said: “Growth in the market has declined thanks to a record low for grocery price deflation: a typical basket of everyday items is now 2.1 per cent cheaper than it was in 2014.

Lower costs are the result of both falling commodity prices and the ongoing supermarket price war, with all major retailers offering cheaper like-for-like goods.

Fraser McKevitt

“Lower costs are the result of both falling commodity prices and the ongoing supermarket price war, with all major retailers offering cheaper like-for-like goods.

“This is good news for consumers, saving the average household £20 in the last three months. But many of the country’s largest grocers have struggled to enjoy substantial growth, with lower prices taking £532 million out of supermarket tills.”

More shoppers through the door have helped Sainsbury’s to be the strongest performer among the Big Four’, despite a 0.2 per cent fall in sales. Growing slightly behind the market, its share now stands at 16.5 per cent, down 0.1 percentage points on last year. Its performance has been boosted by the increased focus on non-food items and the chain’s strength in London, where grocery sales are growing faster than elsewhere in the country.

Mr McKevitt said: “German discounters Aldi and Lidl continue to be the fastest growing retailers, up by 15.1 per cent and 10.1 per cent respectively. Both are rewarded with new record high market shares: 5.4 per cent for Aldi and 3.8 per cent for Lidl. While such growth is the envy of the industry it is slower than in recent months, suggesting the discounter momentum is starting to slow a little.”

Sales at Bradford-based Morrisons declined by 1.1 per cent on a year ago, while at Tesco they fell back by 1.0 per cent, taking market share to 28.4 per cent - a decline of 0.4 percentage points compared to a year ago.

Apart from the discounters only Waitrose has seen an increase in sales, up 1.5 per cent. The Co-operative saw sales fall by 1.0 per cent but did slightly increase footfall, as the business tries to exit larger format supermarkets to concentrate on its convenience business.