‘Big shop’ at Big 4 £15 more than discounters

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Discount grocers Aldi and Lidl have dealt another blow to their Big 4 rivals as new results have shown a “big shop” could cost nearly £15 less in their stores.

Fresh data from retail analysts Nielsen have found that the average cost of a shop for at least 20 items is £38.76 at discounters Aldi and Lidl, compared to £58.52 at high-end stores Waitrose and M&S and £53.12 at the Big 4.

Nielsen’s Homescan Data, which measured the purchasing habits of 16,000 households, also found that the big shop is on the decline as shops for less than six items account for 53 per cent of grocery trips.

However, the percentage of big shops being made in discounters is now 13 per cent, which Nielsen predicts to double in the next five years.

More grocery visits are also being made as the UK makes five per cent more trips to the store compared to two years ago, dropping the average spend to £50.58.


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“In simple terms, when people do a big shop at the discounters they spend £15 less than they do at one at the Big 4, as the shopping basket from a discounter contains a different range of products with more private label,” Nielsen’s UK head of retailer insight Mike Watkins said.

“The move to ‘little and often’ is a symptom of busier and more time-pressured lifestyles as well as financial concerns of wasting food.

“Thus, supermarkets have made huge investments in the convenience store format to meet this demand and offer a greater variety of food and drink. Their historical role for purely immediate or ‘distress’ purchasing is long gone.”

Sainsbury’s disputed these results, stating: “We don’t believe the methodology used offers a true comparison and can reassure our customers we always aim to deliver the best quality and value.”

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