GB red meat retail sales suffering

Thursday, 23 January 2020

By Bethan Wilkins

In the 12-weeks to 29 December, which includes the key Christmas period, total lamb* sales slipped by 4% in volume compared to the same period last year. Prices were 2% higher, so the fall in spend was lessened somewhat. Total beef* sales were quite stable in volume terms, falling by less than 1% year-on-year. However, average prices were lower, and so spend declined by 2%.

Primary fresh/frozen lamb sales fell by more than the overall category, dropping by -6%. Losses came from chops/steaks and leg roasting joints. Shoulder roasting volumes grew 5% while mince had weak growth of less than 1%.

Within primary fresh/frozen beef, sales volumes still declined by 2%, driven by roasting joints and mince. Steaks were boosted by 3.5% in volume, though this came with a fall in average price of nearly 4%.

Looking at pig meat* sales fell by 4.5% in volume, compared to the year before. Total spend remained stable though, as average prices were up 4.5%.

Primary fresh/frozen pork recorded particularly significant losses in both volume (-8%) and value (-7%). Losses were driven by roasting joints and chops/steaks. Bacon sales continued to slide (vol -6%), though prices have recorded a strong 8% rise, which supported spend. There has been some growth in bacon from premium and healthy ranges while standard tier has suffered.

*Total proteins include primary, chilled main meal accompaniments, ready to cook, sausages, bacon, burgers & grills, sliced cooked meats, pulled pork & pork ribs

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