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Aldi hails ‘best ever Christmas’ as festive sales inch higher

·2-min read
An Aldi signs outside one of its supermarkets  (PA Archive)
An Aldi signs outside one of its supermarkets (PA Archive)

Aldi managed to beats its lockdown Christmas sales with bumper festive trading in 2021.

The German discounter trumpeted its “best ever Christmas” today as it said December sales rose 0.4% on last year. Exact figures weren’t given. Sales were 8.1% ahead of 2019 levels, the company said.

Aldi UK CEO Giles Hurley said: “As the UK’s fastest growing supermarket in 2021, our premium Specially Selected range notched up its highest ever sales. We saw strong demand for our award-winning beers, wines and spirits. Stand out popular products included our Specially Selected Exquisite Chesham Bronze Turkey as well as our English Sparkling Wine.”

The supermarket, whose ‘Kevin the Carrot’ Christmas ad campaign was fronted by Marcus Rashford, sold 43 million mince pies, 21 million British pigs-in-blankets and 118 million brussels sprouts in the run up to Christmas. Shoppers bought more than 5.5 million bottles of champagne, sparkling wine and prosecco for Christmas and New Year.

Aldi is the first UK grocer to report on festive sales and its number suggest the sector enjoyed another strong year. Last week market research firm Kantar said Brits spent £11.7 billion in supermarket in December, which was down slightly on 2020’s bumper total. Spending surged in 2020 as Brits splurged on food and drink during a lockdown Christmas.

Susannah Streeter, senior investment and markets analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “The Christmas shopping season is akin to the world cup for retailers and Aldi UK is on a winning streak, not just notching up record sales but attracting half a million new customers.

“It pulled off the impressive tactic of pulling in shoppers attracted by a bargain, and upselling premium products to them, with trollies piled high with luxury treats and alcohol. That’s no mean feat at a time when millions of consumers are facing an income squeeze.”

Hurley said: “As we look ahead, the top priority for most families this year will be managing their household budgets in the face of rising living costs. As the cheapest supermarket in Britain, Aldi will always offer the lowest prices for groceries, no matter what, and continue to support our British farmers and producers.”

Aldi is Britain’s fifth largest supermarket, with over 950 stores and around 38,000 employees. The company plans to create 2,000 jobs this year and open 100 new stores and distribution centres over the next two years.

Staff are set for a pay rise next month as grocers look to attract and retain staff in a tight market. Last week Sainsbury’s became the latest supermarket to raise pay for staff.

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