Fresh market share figures for the UK grocery sector show strong gains for discounters Aldi and Lidl as consumer budgets are squeezed by inflation.

Aldi and Lidl saw sales rise by 28% and 10% respectively in the 12 weeks to 20 January, helping them to chalk up market share gains in a tough UK grocery market, according to the latest figures from Kantar Worldpanel.

If horse DNA in beef burgers is set to affect shoppers’ loyalty to the key retailers involved – Aldi, Lidl, Iceland and Tesco – there was little sign of it by the end of Kantar’s reporting period.

Tesco, it said, maintained its market share and matched market sales growth for the first time since June 2011. Iceland, meanwhile, held on to its record market share of 2.2%, first achieved in Kantar’s last reporting period.

“These positive results are a sign of stabilisation for Tesco as the retailer gets back on track with its customers,” said Edward Garner, director at Kantar.

In a sign of a growing schism between premium and value in the sector, Kantar also pinpointed 8% year-on-year sales growth for Waitrose in the 12 weeks.

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By GlobalData

Morrisons was the clear loser in the period, it said, “suffering a drop in sales and a share decline of 0.6 percentage points”.

Kantar underlined that, with grocery price inflation running at close to 5%, “there is a heightened need for retailers to deliver value for money to customers”.