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Shoppers feeling the impact of rising grocery prices

08 November 2012

  • 88% of shoppers believe that food prices have risen in the last 12 months
  • Rising grocery costs are having a significant effect on shopping behaviour

London, [8th November 2012] – Food inflation is a major concern in the UK, with almost nine out of 10 shoppers believing grocery prices have risen over the last 12 months. Alarmingly, almost half of these shoppers believe that prices have risen by 10% or more, well above the levels recorded by the British Retail Consortium. These price rises are occurring at a time of continued economic uncertainty and will have a significant negative impact on shopper buying behaviour.

Shoppers are noticing the impact of food inflation, with 88% of people in the UK believing that food prices have risen over the last 12 months, research conducted by Canadean Consumer shows. At a time when consumers are lacking financial confidence, it highlights how rises in everyday living costs are being felt across the country. Food inflation appears to be more of a concern outside of London. A total of 77% of people in London believe prices have risen, compared to 94% in Wales (the highest response rate across the UK).

Moreover, of the shoppers who do believe that food prices have risen over the last 12 months, almost half (46%) believe that prices have risen by 10% or more (compared to 36% who said prices have risen by 5-9% and 18% who believe 1-4%). Michael Hughes, Research Manager at Canadean Consumer, explains: “Rising living costs are having a real impact on the purse strings of shoppers, with these price rises often most noticeable on core basic items, such as fruit and vegetables. These price rises are having a genuine influence on shopper behaviour, driving people to switch to alternative grocers that they find cheaper, purchasing more private label groceries and cutting back on non-essential items”.

Hughes continues: “This poses a very real threat to the ‘traditional’ supermarkets, with brand loyalty diminishing and shoppers switching from their usual retailers in the hunt for better deals and bargains. Discounters such as LIDL and ALDI are benefitting most from this, witnessing an increase in footfall. As shoppers visiting these stores tend to find themselves pleasantly surprised with the quality of food on offer, it will prove more difficult for ‘traditional’ retailers to tempt them back once their financial situation improves”.

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