Irish grocery inflation has dropped into single digits for the first time this year, standing at 9.8% in the 12 weeks to 29 October, according to the latest data from Kantar.
Emer Healy, business development director at Kantar, commented, "This is the sixth month in a row that there’s been a drop in inflation, although it’s still high. Compared to last month’s inflation rate of 10.5%, there has been a significant drop of 0.7%.
"The positive news is that this is the lowest inflation level we have seen since September 2022, and we expect this to continue to decline over the coming months."
Grocery sales in Ireland increased by 7.2% in the four weeks to 29 October, with shoppers visiting stores more often in this period.
They made an average of 20.1 trips over the month, up 3.6%), while volumes per trip were down 5.9% year-on-year.
Promotional Pulling Power
The percentage of packs sold on promotion rose by 0.4% compared to the previous month, the data showed.
The percentage of sales generated via promotions for the month was 24.8%, up 6.9% year-on-year, and is now at the highest level seen since August 2023.
Healy added, "Irish shoppers are looking out for the best deals, and own-label goods remained popular over the last 12 weeks, with sales up 11% compared to brands at 6.2% (up 1.1% on last month).
"Premium own-label ranges had the strongest growth, up 12.1% with shoppers spending an additional €14.8 million year-on-year. It looks like shoppers may be trying to temper their spend and seek savings through own-label lines, so they can splurge on the upcoming holiday season."
Consumers are already reaching for more branded and premium own-label products as the festive season approaches, Kantar added.
As a result, more indulgent categories, such as seasonal biscuits and take-home confectionery, saw accelerated growth rates on promotion year on year.
Kantar’s latest pressure group survey revealed that 16% of Irish households expect their finances to improve in the next 12 months, indicating an improvement in the general outlook of Irish consumers.
Online sales increased 28% year on year in the latest 12 weeks, with shoppers spending an additional €39.6 million through the channel. This was driven by more frequent trips (up 2.6%) and addition of new shoppers (up 2.4 percentage points).
Ireland's Top Retailers
Dunnes Stores, Tesco and Lidl all grew ahead of the total market in terms of value in the latest four weeks, Kantar noted.
With a market share of 23.7% and year-on-year growth of 10.8%, Dunnes Stores emerged as Ireland's top retailer.
Dunnes Stores saw the strongest gain in new shoppers (up 2.33 percentage points) and volume per trip among all the retailers.
Tesco ranked second with 22.5% share of the market and 11.3% year-on-year growth.
SuperValu placed third with 20.6% of the market with growth of 6%.
Shoppers at SuperValu made the most trips in store amongst all retailers, with an average of 22.3 trips, alongside an increase in volume per trip.