Wet and cool weather from mid-june to mid-July contributed to the worst year-on-year figures at the UKs leading supermarkets for two years, according to market analyst Nielsen.
“During the four weeks ending July 16, 2016, the value of sales was down by 2.4% versus the same period a year ago,” said the company. “This is the worst figure (excluding an Easter-inflated period) since the four-weeks ending July 19, 2014.”
The company also reported that sales volumes for the same period declined by 1.5%, which was the worst figure since September 2014.
“The weather is having a big impact on the industry at the moment, adding further pressure on sales from deflation and responding to the growth of discounters,” said Nielsen’s UK head of retailer and business insight. Mike Watkins.
“With falling spend per visit, supermarkets are becoming more reliant on attracting new shoppers and encouraging loyalty from repeat visits in order to maintain sales momentum. At the moment, big but short-term events such as Euro 2016 and the upcoming Rio Olympics, are not enough to drive topline sales.”
In the midst of the current sales turmoil, discounters Aldi and Lidl hit a combined record market share of 11.8% during the 12 weeks ending July 16, 2016, with Aldi’s sales rising 18.2% year-on-year and Lidl’s up 12.3%.
“With many new store openings for the discounters still to come, their share of UK grocery spend is likely to continue rising for the rest of the year,” said Mr Watkins (pictured above).