UK supermarkets have seen a slow down in year-on-year grocery sales growth in November 2012, despite increased advertising spend, voucher give-aways and promotions aimed at attracting cautious shoppers, according to the latest figures released by Nielsen.
Aggregate sales growth for the UK’s leading supermarkets during the four weeks ending 10 November was up +2.0% year-on-year. For the previous four week period (ending 24 October 2013) year-on-year sales growth was +2.9%.
Unit sales (volume) also slowed, albeit to a lesser degree, increasing by +0.8% year-on-year – compared to +0.9% year-on-year growth for the previous four weeks.
In September 2012, food inflation reached a two-year low, while the recent Q3 2012 Nielsen Consumer Confidence and Spending Intentions survey showed shoppers remain cautious about discretionary spending.
These facts are reflected in the weakened value growth in general merchandise sales at the leading supermarkets (-5% fall year-on-year), which is pulling down total store sales, said Nielsen.
However, the growth in packaged grocery remains stable at +3%, while the sales of affordable luxuries such as confectionery/crisps and snacks continue to have good momentum at +5%.
Cautious consumer sentiment, though, is reflected in the modest year-on-year sales increase of +2% for beers/wines/spirits.