sainsbury's bws

Sainsbury’s was the only mult to miss out on the past year’s beer and cider renaissance, losing share despite the category returning to growth.

Its sales of beer & cider have sunk by nearly £4m (1%) in the past year, as overall market value rose by £32.9m (1.1%) to £2,929.7m, according to Kantar Worldpanel data [52 w/e 26 March].

Rivals Asda and Morrisons both increased share over the period as the beer and cider category shook off 2016’s £54.4m decline. Tesco’s sales lagged behind the category but were still in positive growth.

Sainsbury’s losses could have been caused by a shift in promotional strategy, which led shoppers to “seek out cheaper prices elsewhere”, said Kantar Worldpanel analyst Steve Human.

A move away from multibuys meant average savings on beer and cider promotions in its stores were down 2.05% in 2016 on the previous year [Assosia Promo Dynamic Retailers 2016 vs 2015].

Sainsbury’s beer, cider and ale prices also rose over the period - by an average of 3% (14p) across 320 SKUs [Brand View 26 March 2017 vs 26 March 2016].

However, a Sainsbury’s spokeswoman claimed Nielsen data showed it had increased share of beer and cider by 0.3% to 15.1% [Nielsen 52 w/e 10 June]. “We are focused on giving our customers the best possible choice and quality,” she said.

It comes as the supermarket embarks on a major review of its beer and cider offer, axing more than 70 SKUs from the likes of Desperados and BrewDog.