// UK grocery sales surge 9.4% in October on the back of record online grocery shopping
// Kantar found that 5.9m Brits bought food online last month, but there was limited evidence of panic-buying
// For the 12-week period ending November 1, UK grocery sales jumped 9.3% to £29.4m
UK grocery sales jumped by 9.4 per cent during the four weeks to November 1 as record numbers of Brits shopped online, according to new figures.
The latest supermarket data from Kantar showed a record-breaking 5.9 million shoppers bought food online last month, but there was “limited evidence” of panic ahead of the second lockdown in England and despite the 17-day firebreak lockdown in Wales taking place in the latter half of the month.
For the 12-week period ending November 1, UK-wide grocery sales jumped 9.3 per cent to £29.4 million.
- Retail sales rise in October as consumers hit shops pre-lockdown
- Second lockdown: How retailers will trade in the coming weeks
Meanwhile, shoppers in England rushed to snap up Christmas gifts ahead of the four-week lockdown, with Kantar revealing toy and entertainment stores more than doubled their share of pre-Covid footfall between Monday to Wednesday last week.
Kantar also revealed internet shopping hit its highest ever level in Wales in the second week of the country’s lockdown, now accounting for 16.2 per cent of the market.
It said Welsh shoppers increased their spending by an average of £10 during the first week of the lockdown, which has now ended.
“While there was some uplift in Wales, the increased spending did not provide any evidence of stockpiling, and initial figures suggest no sign of panic buying in England either,” Kantar head of retail insight Fraser McKevitt said.
“But one thing is always front of mind at this time of year – Christmas – and it seems many people sought to get ahead with gift buying before stores closed.”
The data also showed Morrisons – Britain’s fourth biggest supermarket group by market share – was the best performer of the Big 4 grocers, with sales up 11.4 per cent over the 12-week period and its market share increasing to 10.2 per cent from 10 per cent a year ago.
Tesco notched up a 9.1 per cent rise in sales as its share held steady at 27 per cent, while Sainsbury’s sales lifted 7.6 per cent despite its share decreasing to 15.3 per cent from 15.6 per cent a year earlier.
Asda saw the slowest growth of the big chains, at five per cent, and a drop in market share to 14.4 per cent from 14.9 per cent a year earlier.
Iceland enjoyed a stand-out performance, with sales racing 17.9 per cent higher as shoppers looked to stock up on frozen food and long-lasting provisions to see them through the coronavirus crisis.
with PA Wires