Aldi has narrowly beaten its discount rival Lidl to be named the cheapest supermarket of the year, according to an annual survey by Which?
The consumer group said Aldi was the cheapest supermarket for six of the last 12 months while Lidl – the winner during 2020 – was the cheapest for five, including December.
It comes to its findings by measuring the price of a basket of everyday groceries.
Which? tracked an average increase of 3.4% across the major supermarket chains during 2021.
Waitrose prices increased the most – by 9.2% – and Sainsbury’s the least, at 0.59%.
When it came to December and the run-up to Christmas, Waitrose was found to be more than £9, or 41%, more expensive than Lidl, at £32.85 for a basket of 22 items.
Lidl’s basket came in at £23.29 compared with Aldi’s £23.64.
The shopping list combined branded items such as Kenco coffee, Oxo stock cubes and PG Tips tea bags with own-label products including onions and milk, selected to ensure they were as comparable as possible across the retailers on factors such as weight and quality.
The findings were released as charities warn that millions more families are facing a stark choice between eating and heating amid a sharp rise in the cost of living, chiefly led by unprecedented increases in energy prices.
Which? retail editor Ele Clark said: “No one wants to overpay for basic groceries, especially when a cost-of-living crunch is putting extra pressure on household budgets.
“Our findings show that while prices are going up, some supermarkets are passing their rising costs on to shoppers more than others.
“As well as choosing a supermarket that is cheap overall, other ways to save include swapping from branded to own-brand products, sticking to a shopping list and resisting the temptation to pick up special offers you don’t need.”