World Cup and hot weather bolster supermarkets sales | Business

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England’s progress in the World Cup – combined with an uninterrupted run of hot weather – is giving UK supermarkets a multimillion pound sales fillip as shoppers stock up with beer, barbecue food and ice-cream.

Retailers said their sales reflected the wider celebratory mood, with fans watching the games from home shelling out for football parties and al fresco gatherings before games.

Over the last week sales of BBQ foods, salads, ice-cream, beer, and wine have been the most popular items bought at Tesco, which predicted a further sales uplift in the run-up to England’s quarter-final game with Sweden on Saturday afternoon.

Demand for beer at the UK’s largest retailer last week was the strongest this year, and it predicted sales would be higher this week. It also reported the best summer barbecue meat sales for several years.

By the end of this week Tesco expects to have sold more than 1m burgers and,1m hot dog rolls, 6m ice lollies, around 1m tubs of ice-cream, almost 50m bottles or cans of beer and close to 1m bottles of wine.

“Fantastic weather and the world’s biggest sporting event are creating a real carnival atmosphere across Britain this week,” said Tesco barbecue meats buyer, Natalie Bastow.

“The mere mention of a heatwave is enough to change shopping plans and judging by sales many people are enjoying al fresco dining right now.”

The British Retail Consortium predicted consumers would embark on a £90bn spending spree over the summer – which includes TVs and barbecues – as a buoyant mood swept the UK.

At Waitrose sales of Pimm’s had risen by 21% compared with the same week in 2017, sales of sparkling wine were up by 45%, beer rose by 70%, burgers and sausages were up 55% and 20% respectively. Sales of crisps and nuts rose by 13%, and ice 125%.

The hot weather also triggered a week of record sales of ice lollies at Waitrose – up 188%, while sales of ice-cream cones doubled.

Iceland said it set a new ice lolly sales record on the hottest day of the year so far, last Wednesday, up 340% compared with the same day in 2017.

Sales of Iceland’s barbecue range shot up 74%, with one of its best-selling products, a BBQ Selection Pack (£5, 1.8kg) soaring by 447% on the same day.

“The fantastic temperatures – and the World Cup – have meant that shoppers have been coming in their droves this week to buy frozen food and drink,” said Nigel Broadhurst, Iceland’s managing director.

In the run-up to Saturday’s crunch game, Sainsbury’s is predicting a 40% increase in sales of pizza, crisps and dips, party food and snacks, compared with an average week, and a 50% uplift in beer sales. Argos expects a 80% increase in sales of barbecue sets and accessories, compared to the same period last year.

In an unexpected sales increase, Marks & Spencer – the official suit supplier to the England team since 2007 – said demand for waistcoats had risen 35% because of what the retailer described as “the Gareth Southgate effect”.

2018-07-04 16:36:53

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