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Easter 2003 Sales Summary

May 1, 2003

Retail Sales Summary

Distribution Channel% Change vs. Year Ago
Food Outlets+.01%
Retail Drug Stores+10.7%
Mass Outlets Excluding Wal-Mart-9.3%
Estimated Wal-Mart*+5.7%
Estimated Food, Drug, Mass & Wal-Mart*+2.2%

*It has become more difficult to establish a firm sales figure for holiday candy sales since IRI stopped reporting scan data for the U.S.'s largest retailer, Wal-Mart. Since that time, IRI has projected sales based upon Wal-Mart consumer scan data but this data has continuously under-reported seasonal sales. NCA has therefore delved deeper into the distribution channel category reports for seasonal candy sales. Below, we report on Easter sales by channel and make an estimate based upon overall confectionery sales at Wal-Mart during the twelve-week period.

Summary

Easter candy sales were particularly strong in the drug store channel with more than a ten percent increase. Supermarket sales were flat and the mass channel remains adversely affected by the K-Mart situation. Chocolate Easter candy sales increased 2.3 percent while non-chocolate candy sales grew 1.7 percent.