Just over a quarter of shoppers are planning a big Christmas food shop this year despite spending on festive food and drink set to top £20bn.

According to new research from IGD just 27% of shoppers are planning a big shop with most people spreading the shop across a number of trips and store formats. A quarter of shoppers will visit different stores for the best products and just over half (52%) will do so for the best prices.

“Even at Christmas, shoppers are still looking for ways to help manage their finances. As we’ve seen over the rest of this year, the big weekly shop is in decline - and this is no different at Christmas,” said IGD chief executive Joanne Denney-Finch.

The majority of shoppers surveyed (88%) said they would be visiting the supermarkets to buy their Christmas groceries. However, IGD also found seven out of ten shoppers intend to visit discounters this Christmas - with 6% of those saying they were not usually discounter shoppers.

“Some of the interesting reasons beyond cost that shoppers tell us they’re going to use discounters at Christmas include a quarter (26%) saying they’d like to try new and different products, while nearly one in ten (8%) say they would like to buy something that was recommended to them,” said Denney-Finch.

IGD is also now forecasting that the online grocery channel will be worth just over £1bn in sales, with half of shoppers (46%) planning to buy some groceries online, making it the second fastest growing grocery format this Christmas, after the discounter channel. Denney-Finch said this was due to people paying for online subscription delivery passes and the increased availability of click & collect options, including transport hubs.

IGD predicted total food and drink sales would grow 1.2% from £19.7bn last year to £20bn.