The top- and bottom-end of the UK grocery market is outperforming the middle ground, with the discounters and Waitrose benefitting from the hourglass effect and witnessing faster sales growth than the country’s largest supermarkets.
According to the latest market share figures released by Kantar Worldpanel today (24 April), the overall grocery market is growing at 5%. This, the researchers said, is being fuelled by food price inflation rather than real volume increases.
Among the big four, Asda recorded the strongest growth of 8.3%, as the retailer benefited from its Netto conversions. Sainsbury’s followed with growth just ahead of the market at 5.4%. Both Tesco and Morrisons lagged behind the market and their shares drop by 0.2 points compared with last year.
It was the discounters and Waitrose, however, that outperformed the middle ground, with Aldi recording growth of 27.9% and Lidl 11.1%. Iceland’s growth rate came in at 9.1% and Waitrose followed at 9%.
“Aldi and Lidl continue their strong run and both achieve record shares this period,” said Edward Garner, director at Kantar Worldpanel. “Iceland’s growth rate of 9.1% is also racing ahead of the market – further proof that consumers are convinced by strong value-for-money messages.”
Garner said Waitrose is seeing no slowdown in its growth as consumer cutbacks on eating out mean some shoppers are “willing to spend more money on bringing the dining out experience into the home”.
“The continued growth of premium own-labels, particularly Tesco Finest and Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference, is further evidence of this behaviour,” he added.
Meanwhile, according to the Kantar data, grocery inflation was 5.5% in the period. Kantar said households are still trying to “rein in grocery spending by managing down their ‘personal inflation'”.