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Irish shoppers support local during lockdown – Nielsen

June 3, 2020 Profiles and Interview

Grocery spend on Irish brands has increased by 25% during the lockdown, according to new data released by Nielsen.

It finds that shoppers are spending an additional €35 million on local products compared to the same period in 2019.

The data also shows that alcohol is the fastest growing overall category.

With pubs, bars and restaurants remaining closed, the report reveals that alcohol sales increased by over 66% in the four weeks ending 17th of May 2020, reaching €140 million.

That equates to 22 million litres sold, which is still far below the 38 million litres sold at this time last year both in store and across the hospitality sector.

There was significant growth for stout which accounted for €6 million in sales, as well as cider and gin across both local and non-local brands.

Irish consumers are also opting for local options when choosing their baking ingredients, with sales of Irish produced flour brands up over 217% in the last four weeks, and Irish produced sugar increasing by 65%, both significantly outperforming non local alternatives.

The Nielsen data shows that in the four weeks ending 17th of May, grocery sales in Ireland totalled €1 billion – a growth of 17% compared to the same period in 2019.

Large supermarkets experienced the biggest growth, with value sales up 24% compared to the same period last year, whilst value sales at convenience stores were up by 10%.

As well as alcohol, popular categories over this four week period included frozen food, where sales increased by 35% to reach €19m, as well as shelf-stable food which experienced a 30% surge in demand, reaching €71m.

Karen Mooney, Ireland market leader at Nielsen has said that local shops will continue to play an important role during this pandemic.

“With shoppers less willing to travel further than absolutely necessary, many are turning to the closest local shops to meet their needs. Many shoppers are also actively seeking out local products both for convenience, as the relatively less complex supply chains has meant a wider availability of local products, but also because of greater trust in the safety of local products and the desire to support local producers and businesses,” she said.

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