Online orders, sunshine and sporting spectacles all drove ‘a great performance’ for Waitrose last week (to March 15), with divisional sales, excluding petrol, up 4.9% on last year and waitrose.com orders growing by almost 75% year-on-year.
Waitrose marketing director Rupert Thomas said: “The warmer weather certainly had an impact. as we sold more than 1,000 bags of charcoal, and barbecue food sales sizzled, up 14% on the same time last year. Sausage sales were up more than 11% and burger sales increased by a mouth-watering 36%.
“Picnics were seemingly on the agenda as shoppers sought an early taste of summer. Melon sales leapt by 16%, strawberry sales by 20%, raspberries by 25% and we sold 30% more bottles of rosé wine than the same week a year ago. Ice cream sales shot up by more than 30%, including diet and healthy options, which were up by almost 60%.
“The excitement of the final round of this year’s Six Nations and gearing up for the new Formula One season gave sports fans the perfect opportunity to put their feet up. Ready meal sales were up by nearly 8% and fresh pizza sales increased by 18%.”
Waitrose also opened two new branches – at Edenbridge in Kent and Teignmouth in Devon – which will be joined by the arrival of an outlet at Keynsham, near Bristol, this week.