LONDON — Lidl has overtaken Waitrose to become the UK’s seventh biggest supermarket, according to a new consumer survey.

Data from Kantar Worldpanelshows German discounter Lidl grew its market share by 0.7 percentage points to a record high of 5.2% in the 12 weeks to August 13%. The figure is up from 4.5% a year ago.

Fraser McKevitt, the head of the retailer and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, says in a statement: “Ten million households visited the retailer’s expanding network of stores during the past 12 weeks, with alcohol and fresh produce performing particularly well as the retailer increased sales by 18.9% overall.

“Lidl is growing sales 40% faster with families than with households without children. Families tend to buy more items each time they shop, so strong growth with this demographic has helped Lidl to increase its average basket size year on year.”

The rise means Lidl has overtaken posh supermarket Waitrose as the seventh largest supermarket in Britain. Lidl UK CEO Christian Härtnagel told Business Insider in an emailed statement: “Lidl’s high-quality products at unbeatable low prices are proving a hit with UK customers. The business is going from strength to strength, supported by our efficient model and hard-working employees.

“These latest figures are an indication of our ambitions for the future, as we bring Lidl stores to more towns and cities across the country.”

Aldi, the other German discounter that is closely associated with Lidl, also performed well in the period. It grew its market share by 0.8 percentage points to 7%, remaining the fifth largest supermarket behind “Big Four” Morrisons, Asda, Sainsbury’s, and Tesco.

The strength of Aldi and Lidl reflects a shift among UK shoppers away from high-end groceries to cheap and cheerful produce.

Inflation appears to be driving the move. Inflation is currently running at 2.6% in the UK and forecast to peak at around 3% later this year. Grocery inflation in the period covered by Kantar Wordpanel was 3.3%, it says. Prices are rising fastest for butter and fish.

Tesco remained the UK’s biggest supermarket, although its market share dipped 0.3% to 27.8%. Sainsbury’s was the second largest supermarket, with 15.8% market share. McKevitt says:

“Overall supermarket sales grew by 4.0% year on year, although disappointing weather hit summer favourites hard during the past month. Ice cream sales were down 9% as consumers huddled indoors, while sales of burgers slumped by 25% – an £8 million loss year on year – as rain dampened the nation’s appetite for barbecues.”

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Source: Business Insider

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