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M&S has seen demand for salmon fillets rise as consumers shop less frequently but buy larger packs.
M&S has seen demand for salmon fillets rise as consumers shop less frequently but buy larger packs.

A change in shopping habits has helped boost salmon sales at UK retailer Marks and Spencer.

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M&S has reported that customers are shopping less frequently during the Covid-19 lockdown but buying bigger packs in produce and protein when they do.

“Our Select Farms Scottish salmon bag (5 fillets) at £10 is up by 21%,” said the retailer in a report on customer shopping habits yesterday.

The increase is good news for Scottish Sea Farms, which supplies all M&S Select Farm salmon, grown with a higher than average omega-3 content.

Rory Conn:
Rory Conn: "Shoppers have been increasingly drawn towards healthy, versatile and locally sourced foods such as fresh farmed salmon."

Hugely positive news

Rory Conn, SSF’s head of UK sales, said: “This is hugely positive news following what has been, and continues to be, an immensely challenging time for all.

“Amongst the uncertainty, shoppers have been increasingly drawn towards healthy, versatile and locally sourced foods such as fresh farmed salmon.

“Thanks to our long-standing partnership supplying M&S Scottish salmon, and a huge amount of careful planning on both sides, we’ve been able to meet that increased demand together, despite the widespread disruption. It speaks volumes about the commitment of both M&S and our farmers to keeping the nation well-fed.”

Hungry for strawberries

Salmon is not the only food in greater demand from M&S consumers.

Sales of the retailer’s £9 Oakham chicken breast bag (6-8 pieces) are up by 26%, and demand for the M&S 550g strawberry pack (£4) is up 250% on last year.

Customers are also continuing to stock up on longer-life products including grocery and frozen lines.

The chain’s frozen category is up nearly 75% year on year, compared to a 6.6% increase in the UK market.

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