SuperValu still on top amid €40m Easter spending rush
Supervalu has retained the top spot in Ireland's grocery league, with Dunnes Stores chasing Tesco's heels for second place in the multi-billion euro market, according to latest figures.
Shoppers also spent an extra €40m in the run-up to Easter, the data from research group Kantar Worldpanel shows. Confectionery sales soared 32pc in the 12 weeks to March 27 as the nation stocked up on Easter Eggs, with 69pc of Irish grocery shoppers buying at least one egg.
SuperValu, the brand which is controlled by the Cork-based Musgrave retailing group, had a 24.9pc share of the Irish grocery market in the 12 weeks ended March 27. Tesco had 23.9pc, while Dunnes Stores had 23.5pc.
The growth in the value of sales recorded by Dunnes - at 8.3pc - was the highest among the three biggest grocery retailers here. At SuperValu, growth was 5pc, while at Tesco it was 1.4pc.
But grocery inflation stood at 2.7pc in the 12-week period, meaning that the growth in the value of Tesco's sales was below the rate of increase in inflation. However, the volume of grocery sales at the retailer in Ireland was 2.7pc, as its strategy of keeping prices low drives sales.
Kantar Worldpanel said the average number of trips per shopper to SuperValu in the latest period was 22, compared to 20 in the corresponding period last year.
"Growth for Dunnes Stores continues to be driven by larger shopping trips, with spend per trolley increasing by an impressive €3 year on year," said David Berry, director at Kantar Worldpanel.
"The success of the 'Shop and Save' campaign continues, and has proved particularly effective with families."
Lidl had an 8.5pc market share in the latest period, while Aldi had 8.4pc. Those figures compared to 8.2pc and 8.7pc respectively, during the 12 weeks to March 29, 2015. Easter fell on April 5 last year.
But the rise in the value of sales at Lidl in the latest period was 9.5pc, outstripping every other grocery retailer.
Kantar Worldpanel said that fresh produce sales rose 11pc in the latest period, while crisps and snacks sales were up 12pc.