Its report, 'Western European FMCG Report, Q4' released yesterday said total FMCG sales in Western Europe reached €499bn ($538bn) in 2016.
Grocery value sales in Western Europe’s nine major markets grew €4.3bn ($4.6bn / +0.9%) in 2016 compared to the previous year, it found.
Confectionery & snacks accounted for 23% of growth over the period – growing value sales by €1bn ($1bn) versus 2015, a 1.9% rise.
Only fresh food recorded faster growth – rising €1.6bn ($1.7bn) in 2016 and accounting for 38% of growth in grocery.
Confectionery and chocolate prices rise
Olivier Deschamps, senior vice president, retailer services Europe, for Nielsen, said: “Fresh food and confectionery’s growth were primarily driven by consumers buying more items, whilst alcohol’s was mainly driven by paying higher prices.”
Confectionery & snacks reported 0.9% volume growth, while prices in the segment rose 1.1% in 2016 versus the previous year, according to the report.
Chocolate held a 3.5% value share of the total FMCG market in Western Europe with a value growth of 1.8%, volume decline of 0.5% and price growth of 2.4% in 2016, said Nielsen.
The report covers nine countries in Western Europe: Germany, the UK, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Netherlands, Belgium, and Austria. It covers the latest 52 weeks ending December 25, 2016. It excludes data from UK discount retailers.
Players outside top 10 drive growth
Nielsen found Ferrero had the highest absolute growth of the top 10 FMCG players in Western Europe, ahead of InBev and Diageo respectively.
But it said manufacturers outside the top 10 made up 70% of growth in the Western European grocery market, while the remaining 30% of growth came from private label.
Private label had a 26% share of Western Europe’s grocery market, which was led by players outside the top 10 (46.6% market share).
The top 10 FMCG firms held a 17.4% market share in 2016, said Nielsen.
The market research firm said promotions accounted for around half of the growth in FMCG value sales.
Source: Nielsen - Western European FMCG Report, Q4