Food inflation fell to 7.1% in the three months leading to Christmas, according to the latest data from global retail market analyst Kantar.
The figure represents the eighth month in a row food inflation has fallen and is down from 15.5% in January last year.
Emer Healy of Kantar said she expects the downward pattern to continue.
“This is the eighth month in a row that there has been a drop in inflation, which will be welcome news for consumers. It is the lowest inflation level we have seen since August 2022, and we expect to see this gradual decline continue throughout 2024,” she said.
Looking at the grocery market last month, the Kantar analysis shows over €1.4 billion was spent on groceries with average household spend at €767, up €42 on last year.
The value of groceries sold rose by nearly 8% but the number of individual items purchased was down by 5.3%.
Shoppers made 42 million trips to stores in the four weeks of December, but there was some change in consumers traditional Christmas choices too.
Sales of brussels sprouts were down 2.4% and mince pies were down 9.3%, while sales of potatoes, carrots and broccoli were all up, and turkey sales rose 20%.
Kantar noted that Friday 22 and Saturday 23 of December were the busiest trading days.
In terms of grocery market share, Dunnes Stores was dominant in December with 24.5% of the market.
It was followed by Tesco with 23.7% and Supervalu with 20.8%.
Lidl increased its market share to 12.5% but Aldi’s market share declined to 10.9% from 11.6% 12 months earlier.
Kantar monitors the take home grocery purchasing habits of 5,000 demographically representative households across the Republic of Ireland.
This includes all expenditure through store tills, excluding petrol and in-store concessions.