Shoppers switch to Aldi and Lidl as cost of living crisis escalates

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Schilder weisen am Montag, 3. Maerz 2008, in Frankfurt am Main auf Niederlassungen der Lebensmitteldiscounter Aldi und Lidl hin. Nach Medienberichten von Montag kaufen die Verbraucher in Deutschland immer haeufiger bei Aldi und Lidl ein. (AP Photo/Michael Probst) ---Signs of discounters Aldi and Lidl are seen in Frankfurt, central Germany, Monday, March 3, 2008. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)
Shoppers are switching to Lidl and Aldi as food prices soar. (PA)

Shoppers are switching to budget supermarkets Lidl and Aldi as food prices soar amid the cost of living crisis, new data has revealed.

It comes as food inflation reached 7% over the past four weeks, the highest level since May 2009.

Lidl and Aldi saw their share of the grocery market grow over the 12 weeks to 15 May as shoppers chose discounters amid pressure on their finances, according to research from analytics firm Kantar.

Lidl's market share increased by 6.0% over this period, marginally ahead of Aldi which saw a market share increase of 5.8%.

Tesco continues to be the largest grocery retailer, taking 27.4% of the market.

Lidl makes up 6.9% of the grocery market, and Aldi makes up 9%.

Groceries market share. (Kantar)
Groceries market share. (Kantar)

Read more: Cost of a family fry up breakfast rises amid surging food inflation

Kantar's survey found that 22% of households are “struggling” to make ends meet, with the rising price of the weekly shop a concern for more than nine in 10 of these people.

Despite reporting a fall in sales, Britain’s largest supermarket Tesco also performed strongly as it grew its market share following a smaller decline than key rivals Sainsbury’s, Asda and Morrisons.

Tesco increased its share by 0.4 percentage points to 27.4%, while Sainsbury’s, the second-largest grocer, sits at 14.8%.

Asda, which has reintroduced its discounts for NHS and emergency workers, accounted for 13.8% of the total market.

Iceland’s share remained steady at 2.3%, while Morrisons held 9.5% of the market, with Co-op on 6.1% and Waitrose on 4.9%.

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BRISTOL, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 18:  (EDITORS NOTE: This image was created using digital filters with image numbers 497823062, 497823080, 497823074, 497823122, 497823060, 497823084, 497823066) In this composite image, the logos of the UK's leading supermarkets (Left to right from top row) Lidl, Asda, Sainsbury's (Middle row left to right) Waitrose, Tesco and Aldi and bottom row Morrisons, are displayed outside various branches on November 18, 2015 in Bristol, England. As the crucial Christmas retail period approaches, all the major supermarkets are becoming increasingly competitive to retain and increase their share of the market.   (Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)
The latest figures reported that supermarket sales dropped by 4.4% over the 12 weeks to 15 May. (Getty)

Read more: Asda joins Iceland in offering customers discounts

The government is under intense pressure to act after consumer prices index inflation soared to 9% in the year to April, up from 7% in March, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The rise in CPI was the fastest measured rate since records began in 1989, and the ONS estimates it was the highest since 1982.

It comes as the energy price cap is expected to increase by a further £830 to £2,800 in October, the head of Ofgem said as charity National Energy Action (NEA) warned the hike will plunge households into a “deep, deep crisis”.

Adam Scorer, chief executive of NEA, said: “Ofgem’s warning that the price cap will rise again by over £800 in October will strike terror into the hearts of millions of people already unable to heat and power their homes.

“It will plunge households into deep, deep crisis. The financial, social and health impacts are unthinkable.”

Economic think tank the Resolution Foundation said almost 10 million households could find themselves in “fuel stress” this winter if Ofgem’s prediction comes true.

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