Irish grocery sales grew by 2.7% year-on-year in the 12-weeks to 11 August 2019, according to the latest figures from Kantar.
Shoppers visited grocery stores less frequently in this period but made larger purchases, with an average shopping bill of €23.29 per session.
Sales of summer staples like ice cream and sun creams dropped 17.0% and 41.5% respectively, mainly because of a cooler summer.
'Impact Of Mild Weather'
Charlotte James, consumer insight director at Kantar, commented, "While certain typical summer categories felt the impact of the mild weather this period, it wasn’t all bad news. [...] Wine, which is usually more popular in colder months, grew by 13.7%.
"All the major retailers took advantage of this, with Tesco particularly benefiting by ramping up promotions in the sector. The proportion of wine bought on deal at Tesco increased from 29.6% to 43.8%, resulting in category growth of 14.9% for the retailer."
Ireland's Top Retailers
Dunnes Stores leads the market with a 21.6% market share, followed closely by Tesco on 21.5% and SuperValu on 21.3%.
"[Dunnes] is focusing on differentiating itself from competitors through a range of in-store experiences, and this month it opened a new premium food hall in Dublin’s Ilac Centre as well as a new site in Naas, which focuses on its fresh counters," said James.
Aldi recorded the highest growth in sales in the 12-week period, of 12.7%, to hold a market share of 12.6%.
Lidl saw a 4.3% increase in sales to hold a 12.0% market share in the Irish grocery sector.
Elsewhere, demand for loose fruits jumped by 6.4% while sales of pre-packed alternatives declined by 2.3%, indicating a shift in consumers' preference for sustainable alternatives, Kantar said. Lidl sold the highest percentage (23%) of packaging-free fruits in this period.
James added, "Aldi’s ban on black plastic trays for fruit and veg packaging and SuperValu’s move to 100% compostable shopping bags are direct responses to a change in shoppers' habits. Many consumers are already making the shift towards more sustainable choices."
© 2019 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Dayeeta Das. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.