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U.K. Value Food Sales Slow Between July and October
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U.K. Value Food Sales Slow Between July and October

Growth (by value) of food sales at British supermarkets slowed to 5.4% during the 12 weeks ending October 4, compared with the same period in 2007, Nielsen reported Tuesday.

Flagging sales in September, when growth dipped to 4.5% — a full percentage point below August growth levels, drove the declines.

“Shoppers are still trading down,” Mike Watkins, senior manager, retailer services, Nielsen noted.  “Family shoppers in particular, are trying to save money, with 70% saying on they are looking to economize on grocery shopping — up from 63% in June.” 

Among the top UK food retailers, Tesco remained the dominant value retailer, with a 28.3% share of grocery market spending during 12-week period ending October 4, 2008 — up 4.8% over the chain’s 28.0% share of value sales during the same period last year.

Meanwhile, Asda widened its lead in value sales over Sainsbury (13.9% share), achieving a 15.4% share of value food sales (and 8.3% year over year value growth) versus its 2007 share (14.7%).

Morrisons recorded the strongest year-over-year value sales growth of the top four food retailers (+9.6%), while Iceland showed the strongest overall growth (14.5%) during the 12-week period.

Rank

(by share of grocery sales)

Retailers Share of Grocery Sales:

12 Weeks Ending

Oct. 6, 2007

Share of Grocery Sales:

12 Weeks Ending

Oct. 4, 2008

% Change: Values Sales
1 Tesco 28.0% 28.3% 4.8%
2 Asda 14.7% 15.4% 8.3%
3 Sainsbury 14.0% 13.9% 3.4%
4 Morrisons 9.7% 10.3% 9.6%
5 Co-op 6.3% 6.1% 1.2%
6 Waitrose 3.4% 3.3% 0.7%
7 M&S 3.7% 3.6% -1.0%
8 Somerfield 3.6% 3.5% 1.6%
9 Iceland 1.6% 1.7% 14.5%
Source: The Nielsen Company (July 7 – October 6, 2008 and July 5 – October 4, 2008).

View the full press release.