Waitrose trading update for week ending 2nd January 2015 from Marketing Director, Rupert Thomas.
Total divisional sales excluding fuel were down 2.3%.
New Year's Eve celebrations across the country saw strong sales of premium items. Dry aged beef rose by 26% while caviar sales climbed by a steep 700%. Party food was also a top seller; sales were up by 69% compared to 2014, with breaded prawns and mini Beef Wellingtons topping party hosts' shopping lists. Champagne was the tipple of choice for shoppers ringing in the new year, as sales rose by 8% last week. A favourite among those who chose to toast to 2016 with a beer was Curious Brew, a craft lager made using sparkling wine yeast, with sales increasing by 116%.
After a festive season of indulgence, shoppers kicked off the new year with good intentions, as fruit and vegetable sales soared. Sales of raspberries were up 33%, blueberries increased by 22% and avocados rose by 40%, as healthy eating resumed. Salad ingredients also did well despite the cooler weather, with nutrient-packed beetroot sales up by 25% and radishes up by 145%, compared to this time last year.
A fresh approach to the new year also had a positive impact on sales of cleaning and laundry products. Shoppers were taking some of their holiday time to ensure a sparkling start to 2016, with bath and kitchen cleaning products sales rising by 17.5% year on year, dishwasher tablets increasing by 11% and laundry gel up 9% compared to 2014.