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Irish shoppers spent record €995 million on groceries in December

For a second Christmas in a row and the fourth consecutive period overall, Dunnes was Ireland’s leading retailer.

Image: Shutterstock/Tony Thiethoaly

IRISH SHOPPERS SPENT a record €995 million in December as customers splashed out over the festive period, new figures show. 

The latest Kantar Worldpanel data shows value sales reached €995 million in the month of December, the highest monthly total ever recorded in the Irish grocery market. 

This was driven by Irish shoppers spending an average of €694 on groceries in December – €151 more than a typical month. 

The popularity of classic Christmas staples continued to endure, the figures show, with mince pie sales rising more than 10%. Seasonal biscuit ranges grew by 11% and shoppers spent almost €2 million on Christmas puddings alone. 

“The fact that Christmas fell on a Tuesday meant shoppers could take advantage of a full weekend of trading before the big day, and Saturday 22 December proved the most popular day for Christmas grocery shopping,” Douglas Faughnan, consumer insight director at Kantar said.

“The Irish public spent an additional €25 million compared with the previous Saturday, making it the biggest trading day of the year with €75 million going through tills.”

Supermarket wars

For a second Christmas in a row and the fourth consecutive period overall, Dunnes was Ireland’s leading retailer, accounting for 23% of the grocery market – its highest Christmas share since 2013. 

Dunnes was the only one of the three biggest retailers to see a rise in shopper numbers, with almost 31,000 extra households visiting its stores compared to last year. 

Tesco followed in second place at 22.3%, while SuperValu came in at third place at 21.8%.

Aldi and Lidl were the strongest performing retailers over the 12-week period, with a growth of 8.6% and 4.6% respectively meaning both retailers achieved their highest ever Christmas share.

“The impact Aldi and Lidl have made on the ultra-competitive Irish grocery landscape is evidenced by the fact that more than 70% of households visited each retailer in the 12 weeks to 30 December,” Faughnan said. 

“Own label products still account for the majority of both retailers’ sales, but it was the premium end of these lines which recorded the strongest growth.  Similarly, sales of branded goods accounted for more than 40% of the growth achieved for both Aldi and Lidl – testament to the popularity of their ever-expanding ranges.”

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