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The latest grocery share figures from Kantar Worldpanel for the 12 weeks ending 1 March 2015, show that deflation has reached a new low of -1.6% as price competition between the supermarkets continues to impact the market.
Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, explains: “A combination of lower general inflation and the grocery price war has saved shoppers £400 million in the past 12 weeks, with deflation driven to a record low of -1.6%. All of the major supermarkets are cutting prices to win shoppers, especially within everyday staples such as eggs, vegetables and milk. Retailers are focusing their efforts on simple price cuts rather than complicated ‘multibuy’ deals.
“Among the big four supermarkets Tesco has been the standout retailer. It has posted its strongest performance in 18 months with sales up 1.1% compared with a difficult 2014. Increasing sales have helped Tesco arrest its falling market share, which is down just 0.1 percentage point compared with last year. This resurgence has impacted Asda which competes for many of the same shoppers as Tesco. Asda’s sales are down by 2.1%, taking its market share to 17.0%. Morrisons and Sainsbury’s both grew behind the market average with sales falling by 0.4% and 0.5% respectively.”
Aldi has continued to grow well ahead of the market with sales up 19.3% compared with a year ago. This is Aldi’s slowest rate of growth since June 2011, but it was enough to take the discount retailer to a new record market share of 5.0%. Fellow German supermarket Lidl also performed well, with growth of 13.6% increasing share to 3.5%.
Sales at Waitrose increased by 4.9% in the latest period. The premium grocer is selling more products on promotion than it has done historically, in an effort to be more price competitive. Waitrose’s market share has remained at its highest level with 5.2%, up 0.2 percentage points.
Grocery market Grows At Fastest Rate Since Last Summer
The latest grocery share figures from Kantar Worldpanel for the 12 weeks ending 1 February 2015, show the grocery market growing at 1.1%, the fastest rate since June 2014.
Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, explains: “Shoppers are taking advantage of both lower fuel prices and the continuing price war among the supermarkets to slightly increase their grocery spending. This has pushed the market into 1.1% growth, low by historical standards but a considerable improvement compared to November 2014, when the market contracted.”
“All of the major grocers have continued to compete fiercely on price leading to like-for-like grocery prices falling by 1.2%. This is another record low, saving Britain’s shoppers £327 million over the past 12 weeks.
“Tesco returned to growth for the first time since January 2014, increasing sales by 0.3% compared to this time last year. Britain’s largest retailer is bouncing back from a tough year, with Dave Lewis’s efforts to overhaul the supermarket attracting an additional 236,000 shoppers into its stores in the last 12 weeks. Despite the increase in sales, Tesco’s overall market share fell to 29.0%, down by 0.2 percentage points compared to last year.”
Asda reclaimed the title of second largest retailer this period with 16.9% of the market, overtaking Sainsbury’s, which traditionally performs more strongly at Christmas than the rest of the year. Both grocers saw sales fall compared with a year ago – Asda by 1.7% and Sainsbury’s by 1.0%. Morrisons’ sales fell by 0.4%, the best performance from the Bradford-based retailer since December 2013.
Fraser McKevitt continues: “Early results suggest that discounters Aldi and Lidl will find their accelerated growth levels hard to match in 2015. Aldi’s growth of 21.2% is still impressive but a relative slowing from its 36% peak in April 2014. Likewise, Lidl’s maximum growth of 24% in May last year is now down to 14.2%. Despite this slowdown, both retailers are still taking share from the other retailers – rising 0.8 percentage points and 0.4 percentage points respectively to 4.9% and 3.5%.”
At the premium end of the market Waitrose has supported growth with a greater focus on price and promotion. This has resulted in a sales rise of 7.2%, taking its overall share to 5.2%.
Grocery inflation has seen its 17th successive fall and now stands at -1.2%* for the 12 week period ending 1 February 2015. This means shoppers are now paying less for a representative basket of groceries than they did in 2014. This is another record low since Kantar Worldpanel began recording GPI in October 2006 and reflects the impact of Aldi and Lidl and the market’s competitive response, as well as deflation in some major categories including vegetables, milk and bread.
Contrast Is King To Hit The Sweet Spot For Generation Z Food Tastes
Contrast is king with sweet and spicy flavour combinations tipped for food fame.
Research carried out by Warburtons reveals the new food experiences, flavours and the diverse options we can expect to be eating in and out in this year.
With the rise of generation Z, technology will also take centre stage for all things food related.
The top trends to look for in 2015 include:
1. Sweet and spicy mix up: Look out for the likes of jalapeno honey and ghost chilli honey topped on chicken-and-waffles, whipped into butter, mixed into salad dressings, snuck into sauce. It started with salted caramel but this year the idea of subtle clashes in food will become the norm.
2. A nation of grazers: Quick, portable and smaller portioned foods on the go are replacing traditional meal occasions with the continued popularity of street food testament to this trend.
3. Beneath the surface: Carrots are the new pork belly, cauliflower the new steak, winter kale the new burger. Vegetables, no longer the supporting players in restaurant meals, now have the starring roles. Watch out for parsnips making a come back and kohlrabi, part of the cabbage family, rising in fame.
4. Creative sandwiching:Adventurous sandwiches will pick up pace as consumers think outside the (lunch) box to add flair, not calories to their meal and enjoy food their way. Sandwich alternatives such as thins are hot property this year as they complement this growing trend offering consumers a versatile canvas to add exciting flavour fillings at 420 KJ / 100 Kcal per thin.
5. Breakfast evolution: Taken on-the-go during the week and ‘out-of-hours’ at the weekend, the most important meal of the day is either healthier, quicker and convenient or long and leisurely. Portable foods like yoghurts, breakfast sandwiches and fruit are in huge demand. When looking at breakfast eaten out, everyday ‘home style’ breakfast products are on the rise as shown by Brixton’s popular Burnt Toast eatery where consumers are invited to toast their own bread.
6. Search, eat, share: As generation Z make themselves known, technology will become a core fixture of food occasions. Whether it’s the restaurant experience, the ordering process or social sharing of food, a side of technology will be a must-have.
7. Manipulation: prepare for adjustments in restaurant environments and the way food is served, as foodies play with our senses and manipulate the way the brain tastes and interprets food. Diageo found that if you drink a glass of single malt in a room carpeted with real grass, accompanied by the sound of a lawnmower and birds chirping, the whisky tastes “grassier”.
8. Noodles: the speed, ease, tastiness and value for money that noodle based dishes offer will see the love of noodles continue in 2015. Bone Daddies Ramen Bar hit London by storm recently showing just how popular noodle have become.
9. Rising Stars: Just as dining is becoming less and less formal, so too do we look less to the old guard of cooking, and look more to the young, exciting cooks. Shaping how and what we eat over the next few years will include Florence Knight at Polpetto, Marianne Lumb of Marianne and Daniel Doherty, head chef at Duck and Waffle, who published a book this year and is pushing a great number of boundaries in the kitchen.
10. Back to the future: Childhood food formats that are deliberately re-invented in an adult form – from milkshakes to fish finger sandwiches. Childhood food rituals are coming back.