Spending at NI supermarkets increased by hundreds of millions in 12 months of lockdown - Kantar

Kantar said supermarkets in the north recorded a 14.8 per cent rise in sales in the past 52 weeks.
Kantar said supermarkets in the north recorded a 14.8 per cent rise in sales in the past 52 weeks. Kantar said supermarkets in the north recorded a 14.8 per cent rise in sales in the past 52 weeks.

SUPERMARKETS raked in hundreds of millions of pounds more in the past year despite Northern Ireland shoppers making 20 fewer trips, new analysis suggests.

With the north approaching one year since launching the first Covid-19 lockdown, data company Kantar said spending at tills increased by 14.8 per cent in the past 52 weeks.

The new research said while our spending had slightly eased compared to the fist lockdown, we’re still forking out a lot more at the supermarket during lockdown three than pre-Covid.

Kantar said spending was 12.9 per cent up in the last 12 weeks compared with the same period last year.

Smaller supermarkets, including the likes of Spar and Centra, grew dramatically in the past 12 months, with the value of sales up by 27.2 per cent.

Kantar’s analysis said ‘other outlets’, which includes pharmacy chains and butchers, saw a 22.1 per cent rise in sales during the past year.

It comes as some retailers were allowed to resume click and collect services on Monday.

The slight easing of the restrictions has only been extended to retailers selling clothing, footwear, electrical goods and baby equipment.

It's unclear when other non-essential retailers will be allowed to resume click and collect sales.

Commenting on its latest report, Kantar retail analyst Emer Healy said: “As we approach a full year since the start of restrictions in Northern Ireland, lockdowns have meant shoppers have made 20 fewer trips to the supermarket in the past 12 months.

“They have needed to pick up extra items when they do visit and volume sales have increased by 18.6% per cent compared with the previous year, picking up two additional items per trip on average.”

Despite its overall market share taking a slight knock (0.6 percentage points to 35.1 per cent), Tesco remains the north’s largest supermarket chain.

Kantar said the 12.7 per cent growth in sales in the 52 weeks to February 21 2021 was worth an extra £240 million to the supermarket giant.

Sainsbury’s 14.2 per cent growth in sales earned the retailer an extra £78.7m, while Kantar said Asda’s customers loaded up the most, increasing their shop by 28.1 per cent, earning the chain a 10.6 per cent rise in sales.

Lidl continued its powerful run during the pandemic, recording the strongest growth among the main retailers (21.7 per cent), earning it an extra £43m in store spending.

Emer Healy said shoppers in the north have continued to look for ways to indulge at home during lockdown.

“The latest 12 weeks saw the sales of alcohol boosted by 34 per cent year-on-year. Confectionery and take-home savouries also grew ahead of the total market 18.9 per cent and 17.4 per cent year-on-year.”