Supermarket sales drop for first time since June 2016 - Kantar
Total grocery sales at Britain's big four supermarkets fell in the 12 weeks to 14 July, according to figures released by market research group Kantar on Tuesday.
Sales declined by 0.5% year-on-year, marking the first overall decline in the supermarket sector since June 2016.
Still, the market is expected to return to growth once the comparative highs of last summer pass.
Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar, said: "It was a challenging 12 weeks for all the major grocers, with growth slowing at every supermarket except Ocado. The main factor behind the sales drop-off is shoppers heading out to stores less often. Last year people shopped more frequently and closer to home as they topped up the cupboards while enjoying the sunshine and the men’s football World Cup.
"This year households are making one fewer trip, which may not sound like much but is enough to tip the market into decline. In addition, like-for-like grocery inflation fell marginally to 0.9%, which is good news for consumers but has made it harder for retailers to achieve value growth."
Sales at market leader Tesco dropped 2% during the period, while sales at Sainsbury's and Asda declined 2.3% and 2%, respectively. At Morrisons, sales were down 2.6%. Market share at Tesco slipped 0.4 percentage points from last year to 27.2%, while Sainsbury's market share dipped 0.3 percentage points to 15.3%.
Sales at German discounters Lidl and Aldi rose 7% and 6.7%, respectively.