The return of BBC TV series The Great British Bake Off contributed to a strong performance at supermarket chain Waitrose last week (to August 9), with total sales – excluding petrol – up 8.2%, compared with last year.
Waitrose personnel director Helen Hyde said: “The return to our screens of The Great British Bake Off has already begun to influence sales, as the nation gets back its weekly batch of baking inspiration.
“A sudden rise in demand for glacé cherries, up 25%, and piping bags, up 14%, last week suggested that Mary Berry’s cherry cake was a favourite with viewers.
“One of the surprise stars of episode one, though, was a simple ice cream scoop – used to craft consistent bite-size bakes. Our sales of scoops, already popular in the summer, jumped an extra 10% last week compared to last year.
“Similarly, demand for cake tins leapt 22% while sandwich tins were up 31% as people looked to recreate the on-screen masterpieces.”
The warm weather was also a driver of sales: barbecue meats were up 47% while demand for fish leapt 28% as people continued the trend for lighter meals.
Two new branches opened last week too: Waitrose in Malmesbury and little Waitrose in Notting Hill, both of which “exceeded our expectations for their first week of trading”.