Metcash’s strong sales continue as consumers opt to shop local

Metcash, operator of IGA, has reported strong sales growth of 8.9 per cent across all pillars in a recent trading update.

The group stated that the strong sales momentum in the first half of the 2023FY has been supported by a continued preference for local neighbourhood shopping underpinned by the improved competitiveness of its independent networks.

Peter Birtles, Chairman of Metcash, said in his address to shareholders that it has been well over two years since they first saw the shift in consumer behaviour with shoppers re-discovering the convenience and value of their local neighbourhood stores.

“While there is no doubt Covid helped to accelerate this shift, it is important to highlight that the early benefits of our MFuture program were evident prior to the onset of Covid. This provided the foundation for our sustained performance over the past two years.”

The MFuture program was designed to provide a pathway to sustainable growth, including significantly improving the competitiveness of Metcash’s retail networks.

“Importantly, this shift and momentum has continued into the first half of FY23… confirming that shoppers are continuing to enjoy the improved competitiveness of our network sites, and the service levels that only independent locals can provide.”

Food sales increased 4.3 per cent which Metcash states reflects continued strong demand in both the supermarket and convenience businesses.

The update also stated that the higher rate of inflation continuing into FY23 has led to uncertainty over it’s level going forward and whether it and other costs will impact consumer behaviour in the retail networks of Metcash’s pillars.

“We are continuing to work closely with our suppliers and retailers to help shoppers manage the impact of inflation by providing better value options through offering a wider range of products at competitive prices,” said Birtles.

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