Retailers score extra £28M in sales from World Cup

By Laurence Gibbons contact

- Last updated on GMT

Football supporters have helped increase retailers' alcohol sales
Football supporters have helped increase retailers' alcohol sales

Related tags: World cup, Alcoholic beverage

World Cup fever and warm weather spurred thirsty consumers to spend an extra £28M on beer and cider in the first week of the global football tournament, compared with the same week last year.

That’s according to the latest data from market analyst Information Resources (IRI) for the week ending June 14.

Shoppers splashed out on an extra 10M litres of lager and 2.5M litres of cider last week, the data revealed.

Soft drinks also benefitted, showing a 17% increase in unit sales, with cola and energy drinks showing the biggest increase.

Bagged snacks and nuts were also popular with fans tuning into the World Cup, with an extra £3M being spent compared with last year. Scotch eggs, pork pies, sausage rolls, coleslaw, quiches and dips also proved popular – moving from a year-on-year decline to growth last week – as the nation united in support of the England football team in Brazil.

Great combination

IRI’s director of strategic insights, Tim Eales, said: “[It’s a combination of] great weather, a party atmosphere during the start of the World Cup, Father’s Day and a general feel-good factor in the country at the moment. 

“This is having a positive impact on food and drink sales, especially party snacks, and in some cases reversing a long-term decline. We did see some sectors go down, such as confectionery, but overall the mood is an optimistic one – at least as long as England stays in Brazil – and it’s being reflected in people’s shopping baskets.”

If Eales prediction that people will continue to spend more while England remained in the World Cup competition was true, the increased spending was likely to be over on Tuesday (June 24).

Having lost both of their opening games, England must win their final match against Costa Rica, and hope Italy beat Costa Rica tonight (June 20) and Uruguay on Tuesday to stay in the tournament.

Tim Wilson, md of Wilson Drinks Report said the latest IRI figures showed how important major sporting events – such as the World Cup – were for the alcoholic drinks industry.

“Against a long-term backdrop of volume decline, the supermarkets are reporting a significant boost in sales during the first week of the tournament,”​ he added.

Champagne and sparkling wines also had a good week with sales up around a quarter. The World Cup has had a less significant impact on still wine, with many consumers switching to beer and cider, IRI said.

Big four retailers

The big four retailers predicted last weekend’s England match against Italy would have boosted sales.

Asda expected last weekend its sales of fruit ciders and lager would be up by 20% and it would sell over 3M litres of beer during the tournament. Pizza sales were expected to double over the games and sales of sausages will be up by 42%, it said.

Tesco expected beer and cider to increase by 35% last weekend, wine by 15%, Pimms by 200% and steaks by 140% against the previous weekend.

Morrisons expected beer sales to soar by 25% and to sell 700,000 pizzas and 800,000 ice lollies and tubs of ice-cream. There has been 251% uplift in sales of burgers at Morrisons during the week the World Cup kicked off, the retailer claimed.

Sainsbury expected to sell 2M burgers, 10M sausages and 6M bread rolls last weekend.

It was expecting sales to double across beers and ciders.  Ciders and world beers will perform particularly strongly, with uplifts of up to 150%, the retailer said.

Related topics: Business News, Beverages, Confectionery

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