A 7% decline in average retail prices coupled with a 4% fall in the amount of pork purchased resulted in consumer spending falling by 12% in the 12 weeks to March 1, 2015, according to figures compiled by retail analyst Kantar Worldpanel.
Consumer switching was a key driver behind volume losses, with chilled ready meals and fresh chicken and beef the main beneficiaries. With the exception of pork mince, all cuts registered a fall in purchase volumes over the year.
Chops/steaks have recorded falling demand for some time now, while roasting joints have not recovered from a poor Christmas in 2014. Within roasting joints, shoulder, belly and loin all contributed to year-on-year declines in both volume and value.
Volume sales of leg joints remained at similar levels to last year, though cuts in average prices resulted in a fall in total spending.
The amount of premium bacon purchased was up 40% year-on-year, which helped total bacon sales to increase compared with the same period last year. However, with premium bacon prices 6% down and other bacon 2% cheaper, the total expenditure on bacon was down due on the year.
Sales of pork sausages and ham both declined, despite static or falling prices.