Asda, Morrisons cut prices as cost of living crisis bites

Leeds-based Asda and Bradford-based Morrisons said on Monday that they would cut the prices of essential items amid soaring inflation and slumping UK consumer confidence.

Asda said it will invest over £73 million “in tackling the cost of living crisis for its customers and colleagues.”

Asda said it has “dropped and locked” the price of over 100 “family favourites” and will lock the price down until the end of the year.

It also confirmed to 120,000 hourly paid shop floor workers that their pay will increase to £10.10 per hour from July.

“The move comes as Asda’s Pulse of the Nation survey found that 9 in 10 consumers are concerned about inflationary pressures to their budgets and 87% are worried that grocery prices will increase this year,” said Asda.

“Meanwhile, Asda’s latest Income Tracker has recorded its biggest ever drop in disposable income in March shows that the nation’s lowest income families had 74% less disposable income in March compared to the same time last year.

“Products covered by the ‘dropped and locked’ promise include a range of household favourites, including fresh fruit and vegetables, fresh meat, store cupboard favourites like rice and noodles as well as soft drinks, desserts and frozen products.

“On average, prices will reduce by 12% and include staples such as John West tuna, dropping by 14% from £3.50 to £3, or 500g of Asda easy cook rice which has dropped by 25% down to 75p from £1.”

Asda co-owner Mohsin Issa said: “We know that household budgets are being squeezed by an increasing cost of living and we are committed to doing everything we can to support our customers, colleagues and communities in these exceptionally tough times.

“We’re standing side by side with the families and communities who are juggling so many demands at the moment.

“We’re taking unprecedented action to give families some additional stability and certainty in their weekly shopping by lowering and locking over 100 prices until the end of the year.

“We’re also proud to be investing in increasing the pay for our hardworking store colleagues and continuing to support the communities we are part of.”

Morrisons said it is launching one of its biggest price cuts in recent years by reducing prices on over 500 products.

“The lower prices cover six per cent of Morrisons total volume sales with products from all across the store being reduced,” said Morrisons.

“Items cover cupboard essentials, fridge staples and frozen favourites and include cereal, cooking sauces, chicken and sausages.

“The average saving is 13 per cent with key volume lines being eggs, baked beans and rice.

“Individual items like coffee and nappies are included within the cuts as well as the key ingredients needed for different occasions such as packed lunches or evening meals.

“White baguettes, ham, multi-packs of crisps and sausage rolls have all been cut to help reduce the cost of lunches while the price of mince, rice and kidney beans have all gone down to make it cheaper to make chilli con carne.”

Morrisons CEO David Potts said: “We know that our customers are under real financial pressure at the moment and we want to play our part in helping them when it comes to the cost of grocery shopping.

“These price cuts will have a noticeable and long term impact on our customers’ budgets and demonstrate our commitment to offering them the best possible value.”

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Mark McSherry
Dalriada Media LLC sites are edited by veteran news journalist Mark McSherry, a former staff editor and reporter with Reuters, Bloomberg and major newspapers including the South China Morning Post, London's Sunday Times and The Scotsman. McSherry's journalism has also appeared in The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Independent, The New York Times, London's Evening Standard and Forbes. McSherry is also a professor of journalism and communication arts in universities and colleges in New York City. Scottish-born McSherry has an MBA from the University of Edinburgh and a Certificate in Global Affairs from New York University.