Morrisons was the cheapest place to buy a basket of groceries in July – but only by a fraction. Most of the supermarkets clustered in price last month, with just a couple of more expensive outliers.
The average price for our basket of 71 branded items was £141.45 at Morrisons in July. The most expensive place to buy the same items charged £150.74.
As we enter the second half of the year, it’s clear that other big supermarkets are competing with Asda, which used to be a safe bet for the cheapest place to shop. While Asda came out as cheapest for all but one month last year, it’s only managed it once so far in 2017.
To see the full price comparison results, including Asda, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons, Ocado and Waitrose, head to our supermarket prices compared page.
Supermarkets in the news in July
Data from research company Kantar shows that grocery sales continued to grow in July, boosted by inflation, strong online sales, and shoppers’ appetites for premium own-brand products. Kantar found that own-brand lines now account for 51% of grocery sales, which is a record high. Lidl and Aldi are, once again, Britain’s fastest-growing supermarkets.
More success came for Aldi, as its £10 bottle of gin was rated best in the world. Aldi’s gin was awarded the Supermarket Own Brand Spirits Range of the Year Award at the International Spirits Challenge. But it lost out to another brand when put through our taste tests – read our review to find out which brand we thought had the best gin.
Nine in 10 people support the idea of introducing a plastic-free aisle in supermarkets, according to a survey of 2,000 British adults commissioned by campaign group A Plastic Planet. And 81% said they were concerned about the amount of plastic packaging that is thrown away in the UK.
This month, Tesco announced it will offset the controversial VAT on women’s sanitary products, dubbed the ‘tampon tax’, by reducing the price of tampons and sanitary pads sold in its stores by 5%. It’s the first supermarket chain to introduce price-cutting measures to counter the tax.
How we compare supermarket prices
Each month, we start with a list of more than 100 popular branded products that are likely to be sold in the six supermarkets we cover (Asda, Morrisons, Ocado, Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Waitrose). The products range from PG Tips to Warburton’s bread and John West sardines.
Using data from the independent shopping website MySupermarket, we calculate the average price (including discounts, but not multibuys) for each item across a whole month. We add up those average prices to get the cost of the basket.
If a product hasn’t been sold in one or more of the six supermarkets during the month, then it’s removed from that month’s basket altogether to ensure a fair comparison. This month, we included 71 items in the basket.
Supermarket price-comparison schemes
Many supermarkets have a price-matching scheme, where they compare their prices against other supermarkets and give you a voucher for the difference if your shopping would have been cheaper elsewhere.
We’ve rounded up the differences between each scheme below. Click the links to find out how each supermarket compared in our customer satisfaction survey.
- Asda will give you a voucher for the difference if your ‘comparable grocery shopping’ isn’t 10% cheaper than Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Waitrose.
- Morrisons no longer has a price-match scheme.
- Ocado price matches against Tesco and will give you a voucher for the difference.
- Sainsbury’s no longer has a price-match scheme.
- Tesco checks prices on branded products against Asda, Morrisons, and Sainsbury’s. Tesco will deduct the difference from the price of your shop before you pay at the till or online, so should charge the same as Asda for our basket. But you need to buy at least 10 items to qualify for the scheme.
- Waitrose price-matches Tesco on branded items. There aren’t any vouchers – it claims to sell these items at the same price.