Whether doing a normal weekly shop for the family, or popping into a convenience store for a few select items, they believe they’ve seen a price hike. Just this morning, one retailer pointed out that the same usual items they bought at their local convenience supermarket has gone up from£10 to about£15.
The rise in food prices is just one of the factors affecting the cost of living. And Asda today reveals in May’s income tracker that the average UK family is now£8 a week worse off with the year-on-year cost of living rising by 3.7 per cent.
Even though average earnings before tax went up£23 a week compared with a year ago, the average family is worse off because tax and essentials like food, along with housing and transport, costs£31 a week more.
Asda’s income tracker reveals that food and non-alcoholic drink costs are up 7.9 per cent, transport costs are up 6.2 per cent, including a 19.5 per cent rise in petrol and the cost of housing, fuel and power rose 6.4 per cent in the 12 months to February this year.
The figures make for uncomfortable reading and it is little surprise that the national newspapers are littered with price promotions. In today’s Daily Mail, for instance, Asda is pushing its moniker as the UK’s cheapest supermarket with promotions for salmon fillets for£1 and minced beef for 50p. Rival low-price supermarket Morrison’s is hot on its heels with promotions for ready meals, offering customers the chance to buy two for£1.50. Even upmarket Marks & Spencer is pushing its alcohol, with 25 per cent off all wine and champagne when buying six bottles.
The ads in the newspaper don’t end there. Asda and Morrison’s are hoping its customers are gearing up to watch Wimbledon by offering promotions of strawberries. In Asda’s case, it’s two punnets for£3 and Morrison’s is offering them at half price.
And it isn’t just food. While Asda’s income tracker states that clothing prices have fallen by 6.2 per cent, customers are being cautious about this discretionary spend. And so the same copy of today’s Daily Mail also has promotions for both Sainsbury’s and Tesco clothing.
Customers are well and truly being bombarded with ads for food and clothing and the supermarkets are fighting tooth and nail to offer the best value. Customers can get some bargains if they are savvy and it’ll be the supermarket that hits the right tone with its ads that draw them in.