Irish grocery sales growth slowed to 11.9% in the twelve weeks ended 4 October, according to the latest study from Kantar.
However, grocery sales saw a 12.2% growth over the latest four weeks as shoppers prepared to spend more time at home over the coming months.
Emer Healy, retail analyst at Kantar, commented, “While growth over the past three months has slowed compared with the dizzying heights of lockdown, we still spent over €100 million more on groceries in the past four weeks versus this time last year. We expect to see a further boost in spending as restrictions tighten.”
Strongest Regional Growth
Dublin saw the strongest regional growth, as sales of groceries in the capital jumped by almost 20% in the 12 week period.
A Level Three lockdown was imposed in the capital since mid-September, and consumer trends paint a picture of what could be expected for the rest of the country as more measures to control the virus come into force, the study noted.
Healy added, “Dublin saw the strongest regional growth this period, increasing sales by 19.4% and contributing an additional €48.2 million to the total market year on year. Restrictions on pubs and restaurants meant sales of alcohol soared by over 53% in the past month.
“Shoppers returned to lockdown pastimes including recreating restaurant and holiday favourites at home, with sales of international ingredients rising by 25%. Unsurprisingly, hygiene was at the forefront of Dubliners’ minds, and antiseptics and disinfectants sales were up by 67%.”
SuperValu and Dunnes Stores claimed the highest market share in this period, with both retailers on 21.9%, followed by Tesco at 20.9%.
Lidl and Aldi’s market share stood almost neck and neck at 12.7% and 12.6%, respectively.
In terms of sales growth, Lidl emerged on top at 19.1% with shoppers in Dublin spending an additional €57.3 million in its stores.
Sales in SuperValu were up 15.6% in the 12 weeks as shoppers increased their purchase volume by 13.3%.
Tesco reported 10% sales growth, with shoppers adding more items to their grocery lists.
Dunnes Stores reported sales growth of 8.7%, driven by larger basket size amounting to an additional spending of €63 million.
Aldi grew its sales by 11.0%, as customers spent an average of €36.46 more per shopper in the latest 12 weeks.
With just a few months to go until Christmas, retailers have been introducing deals on products like seasonal chocolates and advent calendars, Kantar said.
During the 12 weeks, Irish consumers spent €1.8 million less on tubs and tins of chocolate compared to last year.
However, nine out of 10 Irish households bought chocolate almost every week over the past three months.
Healy stated, “While the grocers are feeling festive, it is a different story for Irish shoppers. There is a lot of uncertainty around what Christmas will look like this year and as a result, people’s behaviour is very different from what we would normally expect.