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    Supermarket sales set for Euro 2024 fillip, says NIQ

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    The return of some warm weather in May helped drive sales growth at British supermarkets and they are set for a boost from the upcoming Euro 2024 soccer championship, according to industry data published today (31).

    Market researcher NIQ said sales at UK supermarkets rose 3.3 per cent in the four weeks ending May 18 year-on-year, thanks to a brief period of hot weather in the week ending May 11. The data is the most up-to-date snapshot of UK consumer behaviour.

    “It was the warm weather which helped to move the dial in terms of shopper spending at the UK supermarkets, more so than food inflation, which is expected to remain at around 3% for the next few months,” Mike Watkins, NIQ’s UK head of retailer and business insight, said.

    He said NIQ’s survey data showed at least 45 per cent of UK households are interested in Euro 2024. Of those 69 per cent plan to watch the matches at home by themselves or with other household members.

    “This could be a boon for supermarket sales of drinks, snacks and food for event-driven categories, such as barbecues,” said Watkins.

    The tournament, held in Germany, runs from June 14 to July 14, with both England and Scotland participating.

    However, Watkins did point out that comparative numbers are tough as last year the UK enjoyed its hottest June on record.

    Over the 12 weeks to May 18, NIQ said online player Ocado was again the fastest growing UK grocer with sales growth of 12.4 per cent year-on-year, ahead of discounter Lidl with growth of 9.0 per cent and Marks & Spencer with growth of 7.6 per cent.

    Market leader Tesco saw sales growth of 5.4 per cent while Sainsbury’s saw growth of 6.0 per cent. Asda was again the laggard with its sales falling 2.7 per cent, while discounter Aldi only achieved growth of 0.7 per cent.

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