Tesco shutters all food counters as UK grocery inflation reaches record

A Tesco Extra store in the UK

The U.K. grocery retail landscape continues to suffer losses after months of soaring inflation and record-setting grocery price inflation in January.

Inflation of U.K. grocery prices reached 16.7 percent in the four weeks ending 22 January, 2023, according to Kantar, the highest level since the research firm started tracking the figure in 2008.

Late last year, we saw the rate of grocery price inflation dip slightly, but that small sign of relief for consumers has been short-lived,” Kantar Head of Retail and Consumer Insight Fraser McKevitt said in a press release. Households now face an extra GBP 788 (USD 971, EUR 894) in annual food-shopping costs, according to McKevitt.

Chilled fish sales declined 1.3 percent in the U.K. for the quarter ending 25 December,up from the 3.7 percent drop for the quarter ending in late November, according to Kantar.

The U.K.’s smoked fish sub-category realized the largest spending and volume decline during Christmas, as sales plummeted 10.6 percent and volume dropped 14.5 percent compared to Christmas 2021.

In response to the ongoing inflation issue, U.K. retailers are making some drastic moves. Tesco will eliminate around 1,750 lead and team managers in its large stores, but said it will add around 1,800 positions in other stores. And after closing meat, seafood, and hot deli counters in around 390 stores since 2019, Tesco is moving to close all its remaining counters starting in... 

Photo courtesy of Viacheslav Life Studio/Shutterstock

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