Irish shoppers spent record amount over Christmas

Dunnes Stores remained the top Irish supermarket with a market share of 23%

Irish shoppers spent an extra €90 million on groceries over the festive period, according to the latest figures from Kantar Worldpanel.

The figures, which cover the period for the 12 weeks ending December 31st, 2017, show the households spent a record €1,532 on groceries – an increase of €38 compared to last year.

Kantar Worldpanel director David Berry said the increase was largely driven by staple items. “Much of this increase has been driven by staple items, with fruit, vegetables, meat and poultry posting a combined sales increase of €28 million,” he said.

“Shoppers were also partial to a Christmas tipple with sales of alcohol up almost 6 per cent – a boost of €13 million. Wine was the drink of choice this year with white wine and red wine sales up an impressive 10 per cent and 12 per cent respectively.”


Among the retailers, Dunnes Stores remained the top Irish supermarket. The grocer captured a market share of 23 per cent – up 0.3 percentage points on this time last year – and achieved its strongest sales growth since May 2017, up 4.9 per cent.

"Tesco also performed strongly, achieving its highest sales growth since February 2011, up 5.8 per cent," said Mr Berry.

“The supermarket’s impressive growth helped it increase its market share by 0.5 percentage points compared to this time last year, and it now stands at 22.8 per cent.

Online shopping

“SuperValu clocked in sales growth of 2 per cent, with the grocer encouraging customers to spend an extra 70 cents every time they shop.”

Lidl enjoyed a positive Christmas period, with market share rising to 10.4 per cent thanks to sales growth of 4.8 per cent.

While Aldi saw sales rise by 0.9 per cent, this was below the overall market level and led to a slight dip in market share, dropping 0.3 percentage points compared to this time last year.

The figures also show the trend towards online shopping is showing no signs of slowing down.

“Online grocers experienced impressive sales growth of 24 per cent, which boosted their share of the market to a record 2.3 per cent over the Christmas period,” said Mr Berry.

“Although grocery e-commerce shoppers haven’t increased in number, customers who already shop online have upped the frequency of their purchases with, on average, one extra order placed over this period.”

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson is an Irish Times reporter