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Coles, Woolworths continue to capture Australia’s $18bil fresh fruit, veg industry

supermarket shoppingAustralia’s two largest supermarkets have captured more than 51% of the country’s $18 billion fresh fruit and vegetable market between them, according to Roy Morgan Research’s latest analysis of the long-term market trends in 2018.

Roy Morgan said in a statement grocery giant Woolworths Group with a 27.4% share, up 1.3% points since 2017, and Coles Group with a 23.9% share, down 0.7% points, had a combined share of the fresh fruit and vegetable market larger than all other retail outlets including rival supermarkets Aldi and IGA, fruit shops, markets, other supermarkets and other non-supermarkets combined.

“Australia’s ‘Big Two’ supermarket chains Woolworths and Coles now capture over 60% of Australia’s $100b+ grocery market – see analysis here. In recent years the Big Two have been moving to consolidate their market shares in various fresh food markets including fresh fruit & veg, fresh meat, fresh bread, fresh deli and fresh seafood,” said Michele Levine, CEO, Roy Morgan.

“Woolworths has the largest market share in dollars spent, with 27.4% of the total fresh fruit and vegetable market. This is significantly more share than Coles, who nearly average the same amount of weekly shoppers for fruit and vegetables but only have 23.4% of the total market share.”

Grocery giant Woolworths also enjoyed stronger growth in the fresh fruit and vegetable market over the past year than rival Coles, who despite increasing their number of buyers in an average seven day period had a decrease in the share of market.

“It’s not surprising that supermarkets are increasing market share as many Australians buy at least some of their fruit and veg at a supermarket, even if they also buy some at a market or fruit shop. 56% of Australians who purchased fresh fruit or vegetables from a fruit shop also purchased fruit or vegetables from a supermarket in an average seven days,” said Levine.

“With the emergence of fruit delivery services and the anticipated release of Amazon Fresh in Australia, the pressure on fruit shops will be even greater. We expect to see fruit shops surviving in areas where supermarkets don’t deliver great fruit and vegetables, and in areas where consumers are actively choosing specialist food and the fruit shop offers something special.”

Roy Morgan said the third largest supermarket Aldi now has a 10.1% share of the fresh fruit and vegetable market, up 0.6% in a year – although all three have taken substantial market share from traditional fruit shops. Aldi is fast approaching as the third major supermarket group set to overtake fruit shops, which currently account for 15.8% of the market.

“The Supermarket & Fresh Food Currency Report contains a detailed overview of the food & grocery market in Australia today together with trended data spanning nine years. The report covers the total grocery market, as well as reporting on all sub-categories, namely: Supermarkets, Fresh Meat, Fresh Delicatessen items, Fresh Bread and Fresh Fruit/Vegetables,” said Levine.

Roy Morgan said the latest report includes both long and short-term trends for the market size and share, customer numbers and cross visitation at major supermarkets and for each grocery category.

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