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Gin sales up 45% for festive week compared to 2016
Published:  04 January, 2018

UK consumers spent £36 million on gin in supermarkets during the week before Christmas, which is a 45% increase on the previous year, according to the latest data from IRI.

The data provider said this figure equates to 2.2 million bottles bought; 636,000 more than in 2016.

The surge in gin sales also helped boost value sales of mixers by 30% in the Christmas week, and soft drinks sales grew 5.9% as a consequence.

For the year as a whole, total market sales of gin on a 52-week basis are up 28% by value versus 2016.

Sales of sparkling wine in the Christmas week were down by -1.1% in value and -1.6% in volume terms compared to 2016, but despite this a total of 8.8 million bottles of sparkling wine were sold in that one week.

Martin Wood, IRI’s Head of Strategic Insight, Retail Solutions & Innovation, said: “Some categories did really well over Christmas – notably gin, which has taken over from Prosecco and craft ales as the UK’s trendy tipple, and certainly party and gift foods such as snacks, biscuits and confectionery.”

Other highlights from the data show that BWS sales grew slightly compared with last year, with a 0.1% increase in value terms. Vodka (-2.65%) and white rum (-4.1%) are down compared to the previous year, for the week ending 23 December. Ale sales are also down (-5.4%) but still wine grew (especially red wine) with sales up 2.4% in terms of spend, compared with 2016. UK consumers bought 41.5m bottles of wine from supermarkets in the week before Christmas.

The IRI data, which covers major UK grocery multiples (excluding discounters), shows that consumers spent £13.9 billion on FMCG products in supermarkets over the five weeks before Christmas (to 23 December). This is a 1.9% increase on 2016.