The success of private label and the impact of price increases across
European countries is driving up value sales of olive oil, according to
the latest figures from IRI, the provider of big data and predictive
analytics for FMCG manufacturers and retailers.
economic conditions and poor harvests in Spain, Italy and Greece during
2015, value sales were up in several markets, with total sales of €3bn (AU$4.4bn)
(Jan-Dec 2016) in Western Europe, while prices rose on average by 4.8%.
IRI, which measured sales in supermarkets and hypermarkets (and
discounters in selected markets) in Spain, Italy, Netherlands, Germany,
UK, Greece and France, revealed a €6.9m (AU$10.2m) increase in sales over the
previous 12 months, representing 0.36% in actual percentage growth.
Germany (7.9%) and Spain (6.5%) saw the biggest percentage increase,
while Greece (-11.9%) and Italy (-10.4%) suffered the biggest decline in
value sales for 2016.
Several countries reported that private label is now dominant in the
olive oil category, largely driven by the discount channel, which has
extended its product portfolio and increased promotional activity. The
UK, for example, saw a rise of 5% in private label, while in Germany
value sales of private label products grew by 10.8%, driven by both
price and an increase in volume sales. However, private label suffered
in Greece when the main retailer, Marinopoulos, which had a very strong
private label range, went bankrupt, impacting overall sales in the
country last year.
Sebastian Hendricks, Consultant at IRI, comments: “It’s
interesting that olive oil, which has traditionally been dominated by
recognizable brands, has seen a significant shift in recent years.
Private label is now better in quality, which is why we have seen the
increase of PL in other categories as well, but we are also seeing
retailers, including the discounters, giving much more shelf space and
extending the range of their oils, including organic ranges, in-store.”
Prices increase less than in 2015 but still significant
The increase in the price of olive oil was highlighted a year ago by
IRI, when it announced an average price increase of 19.8% in 2015, due
to the impact of a bacterial disease on olive production in Italy and
poor harvests in Spain, Europe’s largest olive oil producing country.
While prices rose much less steeply in 2016 vs. 2015, IRI’s figures
suggest that these environmental factors are still affecting the olive
Greece saw prices go up the most, more than 8%, but Germany and Spain
were close behind with 7.3% and 7.1% increases respectively. The
Netherlands (1.2%) and the UK (1.6%) suffered the lowest price increases