Blog: Dean BestThe list of UK's top five grocers has a new member

Dean Best | 7 February 2017

Kantar Worldpanel issued its monthly supermarket share data in the UK this morning - and the numbers showed a change in the identity of the country's top five food retailers.

Aldi has become the UK's fifth largest grocer by market share, usurping The Co-operative Group, which had held the spot since it acquired Somerfield eight years ago.

Kantar's data, which measured market share for the 12 weeks to 29 January, had Aldi accounting for 6.2% of grocery sales in the UK, above the 6% recorded for The Co-op.

Aldi's sales grew by 12.4% during the period, above the 1.7% expansion seen for the total grocery market, although the German retailer's figures were no doubt boosted by the contribution of recently-opened stores.

Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, said: "With sales up 12.4% year on year, the retailer increased its market share by 0.6 percentage points to clinch fifth place for the first time.

"Just a decade ago Aldi was the UK’s tenth largest food retailer, accounting for less than 2% of the grocery market. Since then the grocer has grown rapidly, climbing the rankings by an impressive five places to hold a 6.2% market share. Underpinned by an extensive programme of store openings, the past quarter has seen Aldi attract 826,000 more shoppers than during the same period last year."

The Co-op's sales grew by 2%, ahead of the market. McKevitt said the retailer had seen a 7% increase in its own-label sales.

Of the top four, Tesco's sales inched up 0.3% during the 12-week period, with its market share at 28.1%. In second, Sainsbury's, saw flat sales and market share of 16.5%. Asda, the UK's third-largest grocer, saw its sales decline 1.9%, although Kantar said the Wal-Mart-owned business had seen its traffic grow year-on-year. Asda's market share stood at 15.6%. Morrisons, the number four food retailer, grew its sales by 1.9%, with its market share at 10.9%.

Kantar also regularly provides a figure for grocery inflation, which it said was 0.7% in the 12 weeks to 29 January. The rise comes after a prolonged period of deflation between September 2014 and December last year.

Expect that rate of growth to accelerate as the impact of the Brexit-led fall in sterling kicks in.

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