Continental cheese (excluding blue) is still the strongest-growing sector other than mini portions (which are growing at 16% but with a market share of only 2.2%). More than 700,000 households have been brought into the category in the past year and combined with an increase in purchase size and frequency, this has grown its market share by 0.8 share points to 12.2% of the cheese market.
The vast majority of Continental cheeses is experiencing strong value growth, particularly Gouda, Feta, and Emmental, all of which are growing ahead of the total Continental sector (Gouda grew 54% this year). Everyday cheeses such as Brie and Edam are also performing well and still dominate the Continental category.
While own label accounts for almost 73% of the Continental cheese sector, its growth has slowed in the latest year, while branded growth has remained fairly constant at 13.3%. This may well be as a result of the falling prices of branded. However, own label is still in healthy growth and is attracting new households.
Continental sliced cooked meat is worth £98m, up 5% year on year, compared with the 2% growth of the whole sliced cooked meat category. Nearly half of all the 24.4 million GB households have purchased from this market at least once in the past 52 weeks. Average price increases of 5.6% are masking static volume performance, down 0.3%.The level of promotional activity hasn’t changed, but there has been a change in product mix.
The largest sector, Continental ham, is overperforming the market. This is a relatively expensive sector and is helping drive up the average price of the overall market, with a continuing drive away from loose products and into more convenient prepacks.
Although the smallest sector, olives is showing strong value growth due to an increase in households buying into the sector as premium products are increasingly favoured. Slight price reductions mean olives are now more attractive to a wider spectrum of buyers. Green olives is still the largest sector and driving growth. Stuffed olives have grown from a small base, while pitted olives dominate.
Louise Brunt, TNS Superpanel
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