The oils market is valued at £179m, and has grown by 4% in the past year. With standard cooking oils declining slightly in value terms, it has been left to premium sectors, namely olive oil and speciality oils, to drive growth in the market. Having overtaken standard cooking oils in 2004, the gap between olive oil and cooking oil continues to grow. Olive oil now represents nearly 50% of the total market in value terms.
Filippo Berio has consolidated its place as the number one brand within the market with sales of £15.2m in the latest year, nearly double those of its nearest competitor in oils, Spry.
Although Tesco currently undertrades in the oils market in relation to its share of trade of total grocers, it has been the chief driver in growing a relatively stagnant market. Sales at the retailer have grown by 9% in the latest year. Asda and Sainsbury are both performing well behind the total market rate.
The picture is even brighter for Tesco in the olive oil market, with year-on-year growth at 12%, nearly double that of the total market sector expansion. However, with olive oil’s pace slowing this year, rapid growth in years to come may be found from the fledgling speciality oils sector, which has increased in value at the retailer by 18%. Sainsbury and Waitrose are ahead of the total market within this category, up 44% and 128% respectively in the latest year.
The growth of this category within these two retailers is in line with their more niche product offerings and higher price points, with the average price per litre of speciality oil at £4.52, compared with £3.97 for olive oil. More than two thirds of speciality oil sales are through retailers’ own-label ranges, compared with 56% for olive oil.
Dean Ashraf, TNS Superpanel
Produced for The Grocer by TNS Superpanel. For more information call 020 8967 4521