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Sainsbury's continues to underperform

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Christian Fernsby ▼ | June 25, 2019
Britain   Meanwhile, sales at discounters Aldi and Lidl rose 9.3% and 7.5%, respectively

SainsburySainsbury's has seen its sales decline ease, according to the latest data from Kantar, but the retailer continues to underperform its rivals.

In the 12 weeks to 16 June, sales at Sainsbury's fell 0.6%. Although this marked an improvement on the 1.2% drop seen in the previous period, it was still weaker than its 'big four' peers, with sales at Tesco flat, while Asda and Morrisons saw their sales decline 0.1% and 0.5%, respectively.

The improvement at Sainsbury's was attributed to an increase in the number of affluent customers visiting the supermarket.

Meanwhile, sales at discounters Aldi and Lidl rose 9.3% and 7.5%, respectively.

Overall, UK grocery sales rose 1.4% year-on-year during the period.

Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar, said: "The modest level of current growth is thanks in no small part to the wet start to the summer, with last year's heatwave and the run up to the men's FIFA World Cup making 2018 a difficult year to top.

"These challenges are reflected in typical summer categories: in the past four weeks sales of ice cream were £15m lower than this time last year, while beer is down £17m and burgers £6m.

"However, even unseasonable clouds have a silver lining. Shoppers sought refuge from the cooler weather and spent more on traditional comfort foods, with fresh and tinned soup sales up by 8% and 16% respectively."

Sainsbury's market share fell to 15.3% from 15.6% in the same period a year ago, Asda's dropped to 14.9% from 15.1%, Morrisons' fell to 10.4% from 10.6% and Tesco's came in at 27.3%, down from 27.7% in 2018.

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