Despite another strong performance by Waitrose, the only non-discounter to increase its market share, Aldi officially moved up to sixth place in the supermarket rankings today, according to the latest figures released by Kantar Worldpanel.

Waitrose’s unbroken run of sales growth, dating back to March 2009, was not enough to halt the march of the German discounter. 

Aldi, Lidl and Waitrose were the only supermarkets with an increased market share, although Sainsbury’s returned to sales growth for the first time since August 2014 with a sales increase of 0.2%, excluding fuel. Aldi and Lidl now account for 9% of the market, up from just 5.4% in 2012. The 72.8% share from the ”big four” is the lowest level in a decade.

”Growth has been fuelled by over half a million new shoppers choosing to visit Aldi this year and average basket sizes increasing by 7%,” says Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel. ”The German discounter’s sales have increased by 16.8% in the latest period, still high compared to other retailers but slower relative to its recent performance.”

Kantar also highlights the fact that grocery inflation has seen its 19th successive fall, standing at -2% [12 week, w/e 29 March].

“The management at Waitrose will probably be less worried by this news than the big four of Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Asda and Morrisons, as well as Co-op, all of whom have more to lose to Aldi than Waitrose does, and all of whom are likely to find it harder to consistently deliver growth at the rate of Waitrose,” said Matt Woodhams, director of brand development at Added Value. 

“The “all things to all people” offer of the major supermarkets is as much at risk from the more polarised proposition of Waitrose as it is from Aldi, both of whom are growing by addressing the specific needs of the mainstream better than the mainstream itself.”