Grocery price inflation falls for 14th consecutive month

Grocery price inflation fell for the 14th consecutive month in April, driven by an increase in supermarkets’ promotional deals, according to latest figures.

Prices were 3.2% higher than a year ago in the four weeks to April 14, dropping significantly from the 4.5% recorded last month, said analysts Kantar.

Items bought on offer made up 29.3% of supermarket sales, the highest level outside Christmas since June 2021.

The increase in promotional offers handed an estimated £1.3 billion in savings to British shoppers, or £46 per household, according to the research.

Ocado financials
Ocado was the grocer with the strongest growth, according to the latest Kantar data (Ocado/PA)

Overall take-home grocery sales rose by 3.3% for the month.

Researchers pointed to this year’s early Easter as a driver of record confectionery sales, as shoppers bought more than £100 million of sweets and chocolate in the seven days up to and including Easter Sunday.

The number of chocolate eggs sold in the period was 3% higher this spring than last, with 37% of consumers buying one during the week. Hot cross buns were even more popular, bought by 45% of Britons.

Despite the emphasis on deals, the prices of sweets and chocolate were among the fastest risers in supermarket aisles, along with chilled fruit juices and drinks, researchers said.

Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Worldpanel by Kantar, said: “This emphasis on offers, coupled with falling prices in some categories like toilet tissues, butter and milk, has helped to bring the rate of grocery inflation down for shoppers at the till.”

CONSUMER Groceries
(PA Graphics)

The data comes after ONS figures last week showed overall inflation fell to 3.2% in March, driven in part by easing in food prices.

Ocado was the fastest-growing grocer, improving sales by 12.5% in the 12 weeks to April 14, ahead of the total online market which grew 6.8%.

Lidl was the fastest-growing supermarket, boosting sales by 9.1% over the same period, handing it a total market share of 8%.

Fellow discounter Aldi reclaimed the 10% market share it last held in September 2023, increasing sales by 2.8%.

Tesco and Sainsbury’s improved sales by 6.8% and 5.9% respectively while spending at Morrisons grew 3.8%. Waitrose and Iceland both saw sales growth of 3.7%.