Tesco says rising sales fuelled by pricing drive

The figures represent the sixth quarter of 'positive sales momentum'
The figures represent the sixth quarter of 'positive sales momentum'

Tesco has reported rising first quarter sales as the supermarket said it was reaping the rewards of offering customers lower prices in the face of rising inflation.

UK like-for-like sales in the first quarter of the year rose 2.3%, driven by a 2.7% comparable sales growth in food.

The figures represent the sixth consecutive quarter of positive sales momentum and come after boss Dave Lewis hailed the grocery giant’s first full year of sales growth in seven years in May.

Mr Lewis said: “In tough market conditions, we have stayed true to our commitment to helping customers, working closely with our supplier partners to keep prices low.

“Customers have responded by doing more of their shopping with us and as a result we continue to grow volumes, particularly in fresh food.”

Tesco said sales were boosted by its fresh food offering, which saw “significant market outperformance”.

The group said it is working with suppliers to protect its customers from inflationary pressures and pledged shoppers will see further price reductions, focused on fresh food and healthy products.

It comes after official figures earlier this week showed inflation surged to 2.9% in May, which was higher than expected.

Mr Lewis added: “This is a good start to the year, with our sixth consecutive quarter of positive like-for-like sales growth across the Group.

“We are confident in our plans to create long-term, sustainable value for our key stakeholders and to deliver on the ambitions we have set out.”

Like-for-like sales across the group rose 1%, although Tesco was held back by a 3% fall in comparable sales at its international division.