According to figures released by the Japan Chain Stores Association, supermarket sales fell by 2.1% year-on-year to JPY1.12 trillion (US$9.74bn) in March, marking the third-straight month of declining sales.

Food sales, which constitute 60% of supermarket sales, totalled JPY673.69bn, a 2.2% decline on the previous year.

The Japan Chain Stores Association consists of 88 member corporations who operate 8,733 stores throughout Japan.