Sales growth in the summer remedies category has slowed compared with a year ago [52 w/e February 27, 2004] when it grew a respectable 9% year-on-year. In the latest year, sales growth has slowed to 0.8%.
Key movements have all been about volume - the number of packs sold across the category is up by 14.5% year-on-year.
Although sun preparation has 67.7% of value sales, the volume growth is marked in hayfever remedies, being up 42.4% in the latest year, with a 2.7% increase in value.
Sun preparation products’ performance is weak compared with 2004, an element of which can be attributed to last year’s mixed summer in the UK. Volume growth is more than 7% year-on-year, but value is down 1.1% - much of it driven by continued promotional activity across the season. The average consumer paid 60p less for a bottle of sun preparation in the year to February 2005. Boots Soltan remains the key brand.
Topical antiseptics experienced value growth of 7.8% on a volume rise of 7.3%, owing to an increase of 23.4% in the numbers of people buying. The key brand is Germolene.
Across summer health, Boots, Asda and Wilkinson have been instrumental in driving value growth. The picture is similar in volume, although Tesco’s performance has been positive.
Karl Brady, TNS Superpanel