Own-brand products on the rise as consumers look for more value

Research shows that women are the main grocery shoppers in Irish households
Research shows that women are the main grocery shoppers in Irish households

NCA survey shows stretched budgets making own-brand dominant category in shopping trolleys



8 August 2013

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A new survey from the National Consumer Agency has shown that supermarket own-brands are becoming more and more dominant in Irish shopping trolleys as consumers try and stretch their cash. The NCA found that families are going back to home cooking, seeking out own-brands in shops and selecting where they shop based on the value they can get.

Stretched budgets mean that supermarket own-brands are fast becoming the dominant category in shopping trolleys – but householders are refusing to compromise on quality. Shopping is now being spread across a number of stores as householders desperately seek out value. There has been a huge shift towards home cooking. Seven out of 10 of the 1,000 adults who were surveyed said they were now preparing meals from scratch. This has meant that processed and ready-to-eat products are less likely to end up in shopping baskets.

Expensive, branded products have become far less popular. However, shoppers said they were not prepared to compromise on quality, but they were buying supermarket own-brand products as most felt the quality of these goods had improved. More than half of consumers are buying more own-brand products than they were a year ago.

NCA director Fergal O’Leary said: "It appears that consumers are increasingly aware of the options and the potential for savings which own-brand products present." There has also been a big rise in own-brand purchases of soft drinks, fruit juice, biscuits and baby products. Cereals, tea and coffee are also proving to be more popular own-brand purchases among shoppers. O’Leary said people were spreading their shopping across several stores to save money. People between the ages of 35 and 49, particularly those with young families, are choosing where to do their grocery shopping based on the prices and the offers available.

The survey also showed that women continue to be responsible for food and grocery shopping in households. O’Leary said that just three out of 10 men did the weekly shopping. "Our research reveals that women continue to be mainly responsible when it comes to shopping for food and groceries, and while shoppers remain focused on price and are definitely thriftier, they are not prepared to compromise on quality," he said.

The research was carried out among 1,000 adults by Behaviour and Attitudes in June this year. It comes after separate findings from the Central Statistics Office last week found that half of households have cut back on their grocery shopping in response to the squeeze on incomes.



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