A drop in the sales of frozen pork meant that overall amount of the meat sold in the three months to the end of February was slightly down on the year.
Figures from Kantar Worldpanel for the December-February period show demand for fresh pork was maintained at similar levels to last year, partly due to an increase in promotional activity in three of the big retailers. Pork bought on promotion accounted for almost half of all sales.
BPEX reports that consumers continue to be price-sensitive, with shoppers looking for better value for money. The latest data show consumers switching to relatively cheaper products. Purchases of beef and lamb roasting joints both fell over the period, while demand for pork roasting joints increased by almost 4%.
Despite only a small increase in the quantity of sausages bought, consumers spent 8% more over the 12 week period than they did a year earlier. Shoppers have shown an increase in demand for the higher-priced premium and standard ranges, moving away from economy sausages.
The shift has partly been driven by an increase in promotional activity for premium and standard ranges, but also sales growth among the discount retailers, which tend to focus on higher-quality sausages.
The amount of bacon rashers bought over the December-February period fell by 3% compared with last year. The drop has in part been driven by less promotional activity among key retailers over the three months.
However, there has also been a shift in shopper habits towards discount retailers. Although discounters make up only a small proportion of the overall market, their sales of bacon rashers increased by 30% over the year. Promotions from discounters have focused on price reductions.