Retail analysis: Free-range adds £10m to eggs market

Poultry Business has teamed up with market research firm Kantar Worldpanel to provide PB’s readers with detailed insight and analysis into the retail market for eggs and poultry. We take a look at what has been driving sales in supermarkets in the past 12 weeks

By Tobias Hill-Summers, Kantar Worldpanel analyst

The egg market has grown year-on-year in both spend and volume over the past 12 weeks, with growth rates almost equal as we saw topline prices remain flat. Although promotions are down by over 25% for the period, the average price paid remains flat at a total market level.

There has, though, been an increase in average price paid for barn and caged eggs, which suggests a continuation of the ‘everyday low price strategy’ trend that was highlighted in the previous period, with promotions now accounting for just 12.6% of total sales in the category. Further, a 3.7% increase in how frequently shoppers buy eggs is driving the growth of the total egg market, though shoppers are also buying slightly larger volumes too (+0.4%).

Brands have seen egg sales fall by 1.9% compared to the same period last year, with private label sales increasing by 7.4%. Free-range and organic eggs have grown strongly over the period, with free-range eggs adding over £10 million in value compared to the previous year.

Free-range eggs have fallen in price by 3.2%, and this has brought in around 979,000 more shoppers, all buying larger volumes in the same 12-week period. Organic eggs, although accounting for just 3.6% of spend in the category, have grown by over 10%. Their rise has come from a 10.6% increase in the number of shoppers, and slight price increase of 2.6%. 

CHICKEN PIECES ON THE SLIDE

Total primary poultry’s 4% growth has been driven by all metrics, with the main contribution a 2.1% increase in frequency of purchase. A small rise in average price in poultry has meant that spend and volume have both grown at similar rates, 4% and 3.7% respectively.

Chicken breast spend grew by 6.1%, and for chicken legs the figure was 7.6%. Notably, the value of chicken pieces has fallen by more than half – losing more than £2m in value spend. The period analysed for this data ended on December 2, so the crucial peak period for turkey isn’t covered here.

Despite this, the turkey category saw strong growth of 5.5% in this period, with volumes increasing by 9.6%, as well as new shoppers coming in. In looking at branding, we see the same pattern as in eggs, with private label sales growing and a decline in branded sales.

TOTAL EGGS VALUE VOLUME AVERAGE PRICE
Value 12 w/e 3rd December 17  (£m) Value 12 w/e 2nd December 18 (£m) Share % % y-o-y Volume 12 w/e 3rd December 17 kg (m) Volume 12 w/e 2nd December 18 kg (m) Share % % y-o-y £/kg 12 w/e 3rd December 17 £/kg 12 w/e 2nd December 18 £ y-o-y % y-o-y
Total Category 198.9 210.4 100.0 5.8% 1382.9 1461.8 100.0 5.7% 0.14 0.14 0.00 0.1%
Free range 141.1 153.0 72.7 8.4% 824.8 923.6 63.2 12.0% 0.17 0.17 -0.01 -3.2%
Barn/cage 50.9 49.8 23.7 -2.1% 535.8 514.2 35.2 -4.0% 0.10 0.10 0.00 2.0%
Organic 6.9 7.6 3.6 10.6% 22.3 24.0 1.6 7.8% 0.31 0.32 0.01 2.6%
Total Category 198.9 210.4 100.0 5.8% 1382.9 1461.8 100.0 0.1 0.14 0.14 0.00 0.0
TOTAL POULTRY VALUE VOLUME AVERAGE PRICE
Value 12 w/e 3rd December 17  (£m) Value 12 w/e 2nd December 18 (£m) Share % % y-o-y Volume 12 w/e 3rd December 17 kg (m) Volume 12 w/e 2nd December 18 kg (m) Share % % y-o-y £/kg 12 w/e 3rd December 17 £/kg 12 w/e 2nd December 18 £ y-o-y % y-o-y
Total Category 493.7 513.2 100.0 4.0% 126.0 130.6 100.0 3.7% 3.92 3.93 0.01 0.3%
Chicken Breast 263.8 279.9 54.5 6.1% 46.0 49.1 37.6 6.6% 5.73 5.70 -0.03 -0.5%
Chicken Leg 65.8 70.8 13.8 7.6% 22.6 25.1 19.2 11.2% 2.92 2.82 -0.10 -3.4%
Chicken Pieces 4.1 1.8 0.3 -56.0% 2.2 1.0 0.8 -55.7% 1.82 1.81 -0.01 -0.5%
Whole Chicken 104.2 104.3 20.3 0.2% 44.1 44.6 34.1 1.2% 2.36 2.34 -0.02 -0.8%
Turkey 30.8 32.4 6.3 5.5% 5.9 6.5 4.9 9.6% 5.22 5.03 -0.19 -3.6%
Turkey Breast 9.7 8.4 1.6 -13.2% 1.2 1.1 0.8 -10.9% 7.95 7.74 -0.21 -2.6%
Turkey pieces 9.0 9.6 1.9 6.7% 1.7 1.8 1.4 7.6% 5.41 5.36 -0.05 -0.9%
Turkey roll/roast 1.5 1.5 0.3 4.9% 0.3 0.4 0.3 15.8% 4.82 4.35 -0.47 -9.8%
Whole Turkey 4.7 5.1 1.0 9.0% 1.5 1.6 1.2 2.5% 3.06 3.26 0.20 6.5%
Other poultry 19.3 18.8 3.7 -2.4% 3.1 2.6 2.0 -16.8% 6.24 7.31 1.07 17.1%
Total Category 493.7 513.2 100.0 4.0% 126.0 130.6 100.0 3.7% 3.92 3.93 0.01 0.3%

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