Tesco elbows its way back up the Irish grocery charts
Tesco has battled back into joint lead in the supermarket wars. The UK giant and Musgrave Group-owned Supervalu now hold 25pc each of the Irish grocery market.
After slipping to second place for the first time in more than a decade earlier this year, Tesco is now the joint biggest player in the market here.
The latest market share figures from Kantar Worldpanel in Ireland are for the 12 weeks ending April 26, including the busy Easter period.
"Over the past 12 weeks SuperValu and Tesco have each captured 25pc of the grocery market, with SuperValu battling to hold onto the number one position it claimed last month and Tesco aiming to recover lost ground," according to David Berry, of Kantar Worldpanel.
With competition intense and inflation low consumers are benefiting from lower prices at the till, he said.
"Many staple grocery items are now cheaper than they were last year, with the price of meat and vegetables both dropping by 3pc and bread by 2pc," Mr Berry added.
While Tesco and Supervalu are now neck and neck, Dunnes posted the strongest sales growth among the big retailers. Its market share lifted from 21.5pc to 22pc over the period despite the company being hit by recent industrial action taken by staff.
Dunnes was especially strong in the busy and growing Dublin market, where the privately owned firm accounts for over a quarter of shopper spend.
The battle for shoppers among the big three supermarkets appears to be hurting the growth of Aldi and Lidl.
The two German discount grocers are growing faster than their bigger rivals, but Aldi's 8.8pc sales growth and Lidl's 7.8pc in the period marks the first time since 2010 that growth has been less than 10pc for either.
That could reflect the return of shoppers to the traditional supermarkets as the economy recovers, but Aldi and Lidl are also growing off increased bases, making double digit increases harder to sustain.