Fruit, veg and meat dominate fresh food market

Australia’s $40 billion+ fresh food market is dominated by fresh fruit and veg (representing 45.6 per cent share of the market) and fresh meat (33.7 per cent of the market) according to the latest Roy Morgan results in the year to December 2017.

Other categories of fresh food have a much smaller share of the overall fresh food market including fresh bread on 7.5 per cent, fresh deli on 6.8 per cent and fresh seafood on 6.4 per cent.

Drilling down into the fresh meat market, last week revealed Australia’s two largest supermarket chains for the first time have a majority of the fresh meat market at 50.8 per cent in the year to December 2017.

Roy Morgan CEO Michele Levine says competition in Australia’s fresh food market is heating up as Woolworths and Coles aggressively grow their fresh food market share at the expense of niche competitors.

“The battle to be Australia’s ‘fresh food’ leader has hotted up in recent years as Coles has mounted a challenge to the traditional ‘fresh food people’ at Woolworths,” she said. “For the first time, the ‘big two’ supermarket chains, Woolworths and Coles, now capture over 50 per cent of Australia’s $40+ billion fresh food market.

“In recent years the big two have been moving to consolidate their market shares in various fresh food markets including fresh fruit and veg, fresh meat, fresh bread, fresh deli and fresh seafood. The growing market concentration of the big two has been built on increasing shares of the fresh fruit and veg market and the fresh meat market.”

Ms Levine says the disruption to Australia’s supermarket duopoly caused by the entrance of new competitors including ALDI, and in the coming years Kaufland and Lidl, is driving Coles and Woolworths to “step up their game and increase their market share ahead of the intense competition these new ‘cashed-up’ rivals will bring to the broader Australian supermarket retailing landscape and will intensify the pressures on smaller specialist retailers”.

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