NEWS23 August 2016

Olympic success and sunny weather drive best supermarket results since 2013

News Retail Trends UK

UK — The recent spell of hot weather combined with Britain’s success at the Olympics in Rio have combined to generate the best year-on-year supermarket sales figures for nearly three years, according to research from Nielsen. 

Sun city crop

During the four weeks ending August 13, 2016, the value of sales increased 0.9% compared with the same period a year ago, according to the figures from Nielsen’s Homescan Total Till and Scantrack. This is the best figure (not including Easter and Christmas) since the four weeks ending November 9, 2013. Sales volumes increased by 1%, which is the best figure for over 16 months (since March 28, 2015 ). 

The strongest category performances were in the soft drinks category (sales were up 9.3% year-on-year; mineral water sales saw particular growth at 18.5%). This was followed by the frozen category (up 4.7%), driven primarily by ice-cream. Hand-held ice-cream sales saw an impressive 41% rise. 

Other strong performances were produce (up 4.1%), with strawberry sales growing by 15%, while in fresh food, fresh beefburgers saw a 19% rise. 

Beers, wine and spirits saw a 3% rise, champagne sales rose 4.9% and sparkling wine continued its double-digit growth with a 13.9% increase in sales.

"The stellar Team GB performances at the Olympics, combined with the hot weather, particularly in mid-July, helped supermarkets to their own personal best for some time,” said Mike Watkins, Nielsen’s UK head of retailer and business insight.

“Brexit seems to have been replaced by an Olympic ‘feel-good’ factor among shoppers and there were more visits to buy food and drink in the last four weeks than this time last year, with most retailers benefiting from an increase in shopper penetration.”

Full results can be found here