Shoppers stocked up on more locally sourced goods and tippled on an old favourite, according to festive food figures released by Lincolnshire Co-op.
The retailer’s food store sales grew 7.5% in the period from 12 December to 6 January, including a record-breaking Christmas Eve where sales shot up by over 11%.
Each food store stocks the Love Local range, featuring products from Lincolnshire Co-op’s trading area, and sales increased by 15%.
More people bought locally sourced meat from suppliers including Mountain’s Boston Sausage, Grasmere Farm and Uncle Henry’s, including over 22,700 packets of locally produced sausages sold.
Customers picked up almost 28,000 bottles of local ale, with sales up 39%. A range of gins from the area, including Damraider Gin, Lincoln Gin, Pin Gin and Deco 22, also proved popular.
Sales of gin have been rising nationally and this continued in Lincolnshire Co-op’s stores with growth of 75% for the spirit during December, including a boost for new varieties like pink gin. Figures also showed customers returning to a traditional tipple with sales of Baileys up by 23%.
The society’s own bakery Gadsby’s saw sales increase by 14% on its festive range during December, with more than 93,000 individual mince pies sold and growth for the bakery’s other popular products, like amaretto truffles and cheese biscuits.
Lincolnshire paid out a dividend bonus of £1.9m to its members on 1 December. Dividend card holders further boosted their balance with offers including 10% extra dividend vouchers, which contributed to another £400,000 in dividend being shared during the month.
Members can also use dividend to buy goods. During December, they redeemed more than £1.3m of dividend from their cards to pay for their shopping in food stores.
Chief retail officer Mark Finn said: “Our teams across the business really came together to deliver for our customers this festive season. We had quality products, plus great standards of availability and service. We also gave our members more with extra dividend.
“Sales of our Love Local range growing is good news for the local economy, because it supports lots of other businesses across our trading area and helps them have a successful festive season too.”