Customers are shifting towards value products in Ireland as they continue to make cutbacks, according to the latest figures from Kantar Worldpanel.

In figures released today (14 February), growth in the Irish grocery market slowed to 1.7% in the 12 weeks ended 23 January, down from 2.3% in the previous quarter. Inflation remained ahead of the market’s growth for the period as consumers traded down to cheaper products.

The research group said that a drop in household income, following budget cuts and new taxes taking effect in January, meant many customers have cut back again on their groceries after the festive season. Private label showed strong growth of 4.5% over the period, while branded goods remained flat at 0.4%.

Aldi and Lidl showed the strongest growth, with Aldi recording 23.6% growth, while Lidl recorded 6.3% growth.

Kantar Worldpanel commercial director David Berry said: “As fresh cuts squeeze shoppers’ wallets this period, we’ve seen a mixed performance from the retailers. As you would expect in these austere times, the discounters have continued to prosper, with Aldi posting excellent sales growth.

Meanwhile, Kantar Worldpanel said that Tesco‘s strong private label offering meant that it recorded “respectable growth” and “outperformed the market for the 17th period in succession”. The retailer’s 5.9% growth lifted its share by 1.1 percentage points to 27.4%, widening its lead over Dunnes stores from 2.4points last year to a gap of 4.1 points this quarter.