Retailers who fail to adapt to changing consumer habits during a recession will not survive, Asda CEO Andy Bond has warned.

Speaking at an event in London yesterday to discuss the impact of the recession on consumer spending, Bond predicted consumers would becoming increasingly frugal as the economic crisis deepened.

“The era of conspicuous consumption is over,” Bond said.

“Saving money by cutting out waste of all kinds will be the priority. I don't see this as being a short-term response to the recession but a fundamental shift that will see the emergence of a new breed of customer.”

"The new emerging consumer will demand more value for money than ever before and genuine price transparency,” he added. “Retailers will have to respond by adapting their business models if they are to survive.”

The retailer’s Pulse of the Nation survey on 10,000 Asda shoppers found customers were increasingly carrying out their own tasks to save money such as dying their hair or making a meal from scratch. However, customers were still willing to pay a premium if they thought they were getting value for money.

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