Chilled fish is the only meat, fish and poultry category which is growing ahead of the overall grocery market, Kantar Worldpanel reveals.

In the 12 weeks to 4th November, much of the grocery growth has come through smaller ‘top up’ shopping trips by consumers, which increased at twice the rate of larger trolley shops. This is said to be an area of opportunity for many MFP markets.

Nathan Ward, business unit director, MFP, explains: “Primary meat and poultry and chilled fish are the key areas seeing growth, with chilled fish boosted by natural and smoked products.

“We know that the summer uplift seen in the processed categories is leaving the market, but that doesn’t completely explain the slower growth year-on-year.”

Ward continues: “Chilled fish has bounced back after a tough year with renewed growth in both value and volume.

“This period sees the return to volume growth for added value lines, whilst natural and smoked fish continues to be popular with consumers – having featured in 1.7m more baskets and been picked up by 180,000 more shoppers than last year.

“Older and upmarket shoppers are key to its popularity, while shoppers in the young families and empty nester groups are increasing spend at a faster rate.”

Salmon is also boosting the chilled fish category, with growth in volume up 10%, driven by natural and smoked salmon.

Natural salmon is up 18% with 2.1m more trips and 644,000 more shoppers – with promotions up 40%.

Smoked salmon is up 20%, as shoppers added it to 1.5m more baskets and base prices fall.

Fresh primary meat and poultry has also moved into growth after a few difficult months.

Meanwhile, red meat continues to see volume decline in beef, but lamb’s volume decline has slowed and pork has returned to volume growth – driven by 419,000 more trips compared to last year.