Total sales excluding fuel were up 7.5% at Waitrose & Partners last week (to Saturday January 5) compared with the same week last year, with trading boosted by the additional day of sales in the run-up to New Year’s Eve.
The supermarket chain’s IT director Mike Sackman said: “Customers were in celebratory mood as Champagne and sparkling wines sales grew by 48% and 27% respectively on last year. Spirit sales were strong with liqueurs up 45%, imported whiskey up 38%, tequila up 37%, cognac up 36%, vermouth up 34% and gins up by more than 31%. Party food sales were also up 86%.”
He added: “Last week, we launched our vegan Fish‘less’fingers, which are already proving popular with customers, helping sales of our vegan and vegetarian ranges increase by 110%.”
The fingers are made from breaded seaweed tofu, with a crispy coating and subtle fish flavour. The retailer said: ‘When paired with the Waitrose 1 White Sourdough and the new Vegan Tartar Sauce, the Fish’less’fingers make for the perfect comfort sandwich. Made from tofu, gherkins, capers, lemon and parsley, the own-brand tartare sauce is creamy, vegan-friendly – and another first-to-market.’
The appetite for vegan food continues to grow, with Waitrose & Partners reporting that sales of its new vegan party food range are up 20% since its launch in October.
Chloe Graves, chilled vegan & vegetarian buyer at Waitrose & Partners said: “After the successful launch of our new vegan and vegetarian range in October, we’ve been working to see what other interesting dishes and products we can add to the range. The Fish’less’fingers are a great vegan alternative to a much-loved food which we hope our customers will love.”
Waitrose & Partners Fish’less’fingers are available nationwide and online at an introductory offer of £3.19 and will then be £3.99 from January 30. The Waitrose & Partners Vegan Tartare Style Sauce is also on an introductory offer of £1.59 and will then be £1.99 from January 30.
Waitrose & Partners Vegan Fish’less’fingers