grocery shopping prices receipt money cost of living inflation

Source: GettyImages

Grocery price inflation has soared to a new high of 17.1% as the discounters continue to rapidly take share from the major supermarkets.

The latest grocery share data from Kantar found that inflation hit the highest level it has recorded of 17.1% in the four weeks to 19 February.

That led to a rise in overall take-home grocery sales increase of 8.8% during the four weeks, as price drove value increases despite volume falls, and by 8.1% over the 12-week period.

Aldi pushed its market share to a new record this period hitting 9.4%, remaining the fastest growing grocer, with sales up by 26.7%. It was closely followed by Lidl which increased sales by 25.4%, taking its market share to 7.1%.

Frozen food specialist Iceland also won share, taking 2.4% of market sales, up from 2.3% last year as spending through its tills increased by 10.8%.

Tesco edged slightly ahead in the battle between Britain’s biggest retailers, with sales up by 6.6%. Sainsbury’s and Asda were just behind, with sales rising by 6.2% and 5.9% respectively. Morrisons’ sales decline of 0.9% was its best performance since May 2021.

Waitrose returned to growth, nudging up sales by 0.7%, convenience retailer Co-op increased sales by 3.4% and Ocado put in a strong performance, with sales up 11.3% despite a wider online fall of 0.9%.

Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar, comments: “Shoppers have been facing sustained price rises for some time now and this February marks a full year since monthly grocery inflation climbed above 4%. This is having a big impact on people’s lives.

“Our latest research shows that grocery price inflation is the second most important financial issue for the public behind energy costs, with two-thirds of people concerned by food and drink prices, above public sector strikes and climate change. One quarter say they’re struggling financially, versus one in five this time last year. If people don’t change how they buy their groceries, households are facing an £811 increase to their average annual bill.”

Shoppers have increasingly turned to own label ranges, with sales of these lines are up by 13.2% this month, well ahead of branded products at 4.6%.

Over the 12-week period grocery inflation was 15.6%, with prices rising fastest in markets such as milk, eggs and margarine.