Predictions by IGD that delivered wholesale will overtake cash and carry have been described as "intellectually careless" by Federation of Wholesale Distributors director general Alan Toft. IGD's Grocery Wholesaling 2001 report says the cash and carry market has declined 1.1% since 1999, but still remains 51% larger than the delivered sector. It also reports that the delivered market grew 5.2% over the same period, leading to an overall increase of 1.3% in the UK grocery wholesale market to £15.3bn. The report concludes that at present growth rates, delivered turnover will overtake cash and carry by 2007. But Toft responded: "We do not agree that cash and carry has shown a decline at all. Our figures from members show an overall increase for 2000 over 1999 of 1.45%. Alcohol sales alone have increased consistently in the last three years accounting for an average 1.25% sector growth each year. Mobile phone cards have brought a big boost as well." Toft agreed delivered was showing firm growth, describing it as a "great success story", but added: "To declare that delivered will overtake cash and carry in five years time is intellectually careless. "IGD has not taken into consideration increasing sales to caterers through cash and carry, increasing alcohol and soft drink sales, booming sales to cash and carry retail clubs and increasing sales through the call and collect concept. "As competition in the marketplace intensifies then you will get a greater rather than a lesser demand for lowest cost price on which cash and carry bases its offering." An IGD spokeswoman said: "IGD stands by its figures and research methodology. While we appreciate there are many good operators out in the C&C marketplace it is inevitable that gains will be made at the expense of weaker competition. Our report attempts to provide an honest and realistic appraisal of the current market." {{NEWS }}