Shoppers preparing for Mothering Sunday helped grow provisional sales – excluding petrol – up 1.2% compared with last year at Waitrose last week (to March 7).
Gift cards saw a 57% rise year-on-year, while Mother’s Day gifts were up 41%. Candles lifted 24%, while demand for vases rocketed by nearly 200%.
Luxury bath products are in high demand, with Senspa’s bath salts range up more than 100% compared to last year. Breakfast treats also appear to be part of the plans with sales of frozen croissants and pain au chocolat up 16%, ready to be served warm on Sunday, while sparkling wines saw an increase, with sales jumping 57%.
Waitrose personnel director Helen Hyde added: “There was an encouraging sign of spring last week with the arrival of the first British strawberries in our shops. The early strawberry harvest was helped by a relatively warm winter and high light levels.
“In the second week of Fairtrade Fortnight, demand for our bananas was strong, up 5.5% compared to last year, while Fairtrade-certified chocolate such as Green & Blacks is up 230%. We are working to ensure all our own-label chocolate bars are Fairtrade by the end of this year.”