Fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) sales for the third quarter of 2013 rose 3 per cent from 1.2 per cent compared to the same period last year, according to Nielson.
The global insights firm said that the rises were driven by 2.8 per cent inflation and a 0.2 per cent rise in sales volumes.
Turkey experienced the highest nominal year-on-year sales growth (+9.5 per cent) in Q3 among the 21 European countries measured, followed by Portugal (+6.6 per cent) and Norway (+4.2 per cent). Of the big five western European markets, the UK and Germany (+3.6 per cent) had the highest nominal growth.
Just four of the 21 countries experienced a year-on-year decline in nominal value growth – compared to nine in the previous quarter; Greece (-1.8 per cent, Ireland and Slovakia, which saw decreases of -0.6 per cent, had the largest decreases.
“The encouraging increase in FMCG sales value is being driven almost solely by price inflation. The lack of volume growth is the harsh reality facing Europe as a whole, and is especially worrying in the big markets such as UK, Germany and Italy,” explained Jean-Jacques Vandenheede, Nielsen‘s European director of retail insights. “Only in the Nordics, Turkey and Portugal are consumers buying noticeably more than a year ago.”
“However, we are seeing a recovery in consumer confidence. As this typically takes two quarters to translate into an impact on sales, we should start to see a better picture emerge from Q1 2014.”