These are the key findings of Gallaher’s annual category review of the tobacco market, out this week. According to the supplier’s calculations, smokers shopping in an independent buy £31.48 of groceries there each week - the equivalent of £1,636 a year - compared to non-smokers, who spend £17.39.
Gallaher estimates that tobacco contributes around 21% to sales at a symbol group’s store, claiming it is the most cash-generative category within independent and symbol group stores.
The review also gives an insight into the factors affecting multiple operators along with the areas where retailers would be able to improve sales.
In a bid to capture a larger share of the £1,636 each smoker spends in their local shop throughout the year, Gallaher said supermarkets should focus on “top-up shopping”, such as tobacco purchases “for future growth”.
Gallaher said copies of the review, which has been produced on a CD-Rom, would be available to retailers from sales representatives.