The best part of Christmas is the food – it’s as simple as that. The excuse to stuff yourself with a month’s worth of food in one day purely because ‘it’s Christmas’ is the perfect reason to treat yourself.
However, it comes at a cost. The whole package is expensive – from your Grandma’s socks to the ridiculous jumper you’ve got to wear at an office party – it’s all an extra cost in the month where you struggle to reach payday without having to buy every man and his dog some form of gift.
The food is the big bill, though. It costs a fortune for families – thanks, mum and dad – to feed all the mouths when everyone has the same motive: ‘Let’s see how much I can turn myself into a balloon’.
If it’s not the cheese after three portions of roast turkey, it’s the brandy for the Christmas pudding – which no one likes as it’s possibly the worst tasting cake in the world; but, the whole tradition of lighting the cake and trying to find the penny wouldn’t be Christmas without it.
Yet, as much as we all love it, it would seem our Christmas outlay is reducing. The public looks to be spending less money in the big supermarkets in the last five years, which has seen a rise in spending at low-cost supermarkets.
The Christmas period, in this case, counts for the three months prior to January – all of which have seen a decline since 2012. The peak of supermarket sales all reached a climax in 2012 – for the last five years – and not one of the supermarkets has reached such sales since.
The decline in sales for the supermarkets could be seen for a number of reasons; the minor event of Brexit last summer has seen a fall in consumer spending, which has then seen a rise in popularity of low-supermarkets.
According to the Good Housekeeping Christmas dinner index, the price of a Christmas dinner – for eight people – in 2016 would cost on average a family £22.03 at Lidl; for Waitrose, this would cost £40.02.
Such a difference in price has perhaps been the telling factor for the decline in sales since 2012, which has seen a percentage gain from +5.4% to -2.4% in just four years for around the Christmas period.
Such a trend looks likely to follow similar suit this Christmas with economic uncertainty continuing to cause doubt amongst British public spending. Until then, it looks as though the likes of Aldi and Lidl are set to be the winners again this Christmas.