Edward Garner, communications director at Kantar Worldpanel, says the supermarket sector is enjoying a “two nations” effect as at one end of the spectrum discounters Lidl and Aldi are doing well, while at the top end of the market Waitrose also reports strong growth.
Aldi and Lidl both recorded nearly 18% year-on-year growth and hold onto their all-time record shares of 3.4% and 2.6% respectively.
Waitrose posted the next highest growth at 8.9%.
While the discounters are attracting some new customers, most of the growth is coming from increased basket size as consumers use discount retailers to “top up” their main shopping.
The discounters rising share is coming at a cost to Asda, which saw its market share fall to 16.3% down from 16.7% a year ago.
Kantar’s monthly report reveals that Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons remain relatively constant at 30.9%, 16.2% and 12.0% respectively.
The grocery market is growing at 4.7%, but Kantar says the figure for the three months to 12 June 2011, conceals the sharp slow-down following the Royal Wedding and Easter boost. Growth for the latest four weeks slumped to 2.5%.
Garner says: “Against this murky background, the ’two nations’ effect continues unabated. Further evidence for the ’two nations’ trend is demonstrated by double-digit growth of Tesco’s Finest range. As the household budget remains tight, there is no doubt that many shoppers are adopting coping strategies such as taking advantage of promotional offers or ’topping up’ at the discounters. However, there is no sign of a return to the rapid growth of budget own-label ranges that we saw in 2008.”