Supermarket alcohol sales soar despite price rises

UK supermarket prices have risen by their highest margin in four years as Brexit hits consumers hard, but that hasn’t put a stopper on our taste for alcohol, according to new figures.

Lidl is bolstering its drinks range in the run-up to Christmas.

Like-for-like grocery inflation now stands at 3.4% – its highest level since November 2013. Over the course of a year, this could add £143.70 to a typical family’s grocery bill

The latest report from Kantar Worldpanel reveals that the dramatic decline in the value of the pound has driven up the cost of imports and forced up the rate of inflation, leaving consumers out-of-pocket.

“With the average shop currently costing £18.26, consumers are now paying an extra 62 pence each time and over the course of a year it could add £143.70 to a typical family’s grocery bill,” said Fraser McKevitt, Kantar’s head of retail and consumer insight.

But despite this, alcohol sales are still on the rise. Drinks sales have risen by 5.3% year-on-year, according to McKevitt, with British consumers spending an extra £142 million on alcohol in the last financial quiarter.

Sales on spirits may be soaring, but McKevitt said we’re garuanteed to see another surge ahead of the Christmas period.

“The British public is only just getting started when it comes to Christmas shopping,” Fraser said, “and is expected to shell out a whopping £28.7 billion at the grocers in the final 12 weeks of 2017.”

While alcohol revenues are up across the board, Kantar’s results also showed German challenger supermarkets Lidl and Aldi are continuing to shake up the British grocery market, with Lidl being named as the fastest-growing retailer

“Lidl is Britain’s fastest growing supermarket for the fifth consecutive period, with sales up 15.1%,” Kantar said, adding that a string of new store openings this year have helped the retailer.

Just over 10 million households visited Lidl at least once during the past three months, boosting the grocer’s market share 5.1%. Aldi, meanwhile, saw sales rise by 13.1%, increasing its market share to nearly 7%.

Both Lidl and Aldi have ramped up their drinks offerings in the run-up to the festive period, with the former marketing a “hangover-free” Prosecco., and Aldi introducing its own wine advent calendar for £49.99, and a Prosecco Jeroboam retailing at £30.

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