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Dublin: 6 °C Saturday 22 February, 2020

Boost for Irish retailers as sales of ice cream, fans and patio furniture spike during heatwave

The World Cup and royal wedding also helped alcohol and magazine sales this year.

Image: Shutterstock

IRISH RETALIERS HAVE enjoyed a boost to their sales thanks to the long spell of fine weather.

The latest monitor from Retail Ireland, published today, reports sales in the Irish retail sector grew by 3.4% in the second quarter of this year. Sales in categories such as grocery, DIY and hardware, and fuel have grown steadily in the first half of the year, benefitting strongly from the sustained warm weather in June.

Retail Ireland said this boost is welcome following disruptions to trade and losses which ran into tens of millions arising from Storm Emma earlier in the year.

“From the prolonged cold snap and heavy snow of March, to the drought conditions of June, weather has had a huge impact on Irish retailers in the first half of this year,” commented Retail Ireland director Thomas Burke.

“With the recent fine spell of weather, our members have reported strong demand for seasonal products such a fans, ice cream, BBQs and patio furniture, amongst other things. This spike in demand pushed retailers supply chains to the limit during June particularly.

“Other once-off events such as the football World Cup and the royal wedding in the UK provided a welcome boost to trade for retailers in the period, with sales of soft drinks, alcohol, and magazines benefiting most. This trend reflects a broader move towards event led retail in recent years as retailers seek to leverage such events to help promote consumer spend.”

Warm weather drove strong seasonal healthcare (hay fever) and sun care performance in Irish pharmacies, coupled with a healthy performance on core toiletries in the second quarter of the year.

Beauty related categories performance slowed during the quarter due to the exceptional hot weather in June.

Retail Ireland noted that the fine weather was not good news for all sectors of retail, with some reporting declining footfall and falling sales in the period.

“While many retail categories have been boosted by the long dry spell, other sectors such as department stores, fashion and footwear and hairdressing have reported lower than normal footfall and declining sales in the period, with consumers opting for a trip to the beach or park rather than a day’s shopping or pampering in the warm weather,” Burke said.

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