Buoyant sales of Easter eggs and legs of lamb saw supermarket sales jump by 4.6 per cent in the first quarter of the year, as SuperValu retained its grip on the top spot with a near 25 per cent market share.
Figures from Kantar Worldpanel for the 12 weeks ending March 27th, show that supermarket sales rose by 4.6 per cent when compared with the same period last year – up from growth of 3.6 per cent last month.
"An early Easter saw shoppers spend an extra € 40 million on groceries as they prepared to celebrate with family and friends," said David Berry, director at Kantar Worldpanel, noting that sales of confectionery rose by 32 per cent, with with more than two thirds of people buying at least one chocolate egg during Easter.
On the supermarket front, SuperValu has retained the top spot, cementing its lead with a slightly increased market share of 24.9 per cent, up by 0.1 per cent year on year. The Musgraves owned supermarket chain also reported an increase in visits, with shoppers visiting the chain 22 times on average,up from 20 in 2015.
Tesco clung onto second place with a 23.9 per cent share, just 0.5 per cent ahead of closest rival Dunnes Stores, but the UK group's performance continues to improve.
“Tesco posted sales growth for the fourth consecutive month as their performance continues to improve. Volume growth remains stronger than value - an increase of 2.7% compared with 1.4% - as keeping prices low continues to be a major focus for the retailer,” Mr Berry said.
Dunnes Stores has also grown its share of the market, up to 23.5 per cent from 22.7 per cent previously, on the back of its Shop and Save campaign, which givs shoppers a cash back depending on how much they spend.
Among the German discounters, Aldi has slipped back, giving Lidl the dominiant position with a market share of 8.5 per cent. In fact Lidl reported the strongest sales increase in Irish grocery, with growth of 9.5 per cent.