Grocery trade escapes immediate Brexit fallout

Brexit has had little impact on grocery share figures, according to the latest data from research firm Kantar Worldpanel.

Grocery sales for the 12 weeks ending 17 July were up 0.1%, with no immediate impact seen on prices charged by retailers or the sales volumes bought by consumers.

Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, commented: “The EU referendum result has had no immediate impact on the prices retailers are charging or the sales volumes consumers are buying over the past 12 weeks. The nation’s average shopping basket is 1.4% cheaper than a year ago, exactly the same level of deflation as reported last month, and it remains to be seen if the Brexit vote will bring about any price rises this year.”

Sales at Tesco fell 0.7% in the period, although the retailer’s market share decline has slowed, down just 0.2 percentage points to 28.3% of the market.

At Sainsbury’s sales fell 1.1%, taking its market share down 0.2 percentage points to 16.3%. McKevitt said: “Sainsbury’s has followed through on its promise to remove multibuy offers from its shelves in favour of everyday low prices and simple price cuts.”

At Asda sales dropped 5.6%, with its market share declining to 15.5%. However, it was the only retailer among the big four to increase the proportion of sales made on promotion compared to last year, according to McKevitt.

Meanwhile, Morrisons’ sales fell 1.8%, its best performance since January this year and continuing to reflect store disposals in 2015. Morrisons’ market share now stands at 10.7%. Its premium own-label lines showed strong growth of 3.8%.

Both Lidl and Aldi saw new market share highs, with Lidl reaching 4.5% due to a 12.5% sales rise during the period and Aldi increased its share to a record 6.2%, thanks to an 11% jump in sales.

Sales growth continued at Iceland (+ 2.8% year –on-year), The Co-operative (+2.1% YOY) and Waitrose (+1,6% YOY), with all three gaining market share in the period to 2.1%, 6.4% and 5.1% respectively.

Grocery inflation stood at -1.4% for the 12-week period, added Kantar, meaning shoppers are now paying less for a representative basket of groceries than they did in 2015.

The discounters have continued to grow their market share steadily this year. 

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