Generally, private label and A-Brands were winning during the crisis period. The disinfection and personal hygiene categories were clear winners during the pandemic. These categories saw more than double-digit growth, and even now, the year-on-year growth is significant. It is anticipated that this growth will continue, and higher sales will be maintained long-term. A trend towards a more rationalized/reduced portfolio can be expected, accompanied by more targeted marketing campaigns.
On the other hand, more expensive premium goods, especially in Beauty Care, have been suffering during the pandemic. This is due to the greater willingness of employers to allow their employees to work from their home office and a lower frequency of visits at HoReCa outlets, as well as a limited number of cultural events. Manufacturers put effort behind returning to a more stable situation. Other categories in decline during pandemic were, e.g. chewing gum, shaving products, foot care, shoe care, and energy drinks.
Contemporary sales increases in food for home baking, cooking and household products such as detergents are expected to return to pre-COVID levels. This return to pre-COVID revenues will be influenced by the further development of government restrictions and how the global, as well as the Czech economy, will evolve.
Since consumers were afraid of buying unpackaged bakery and sales declined, retailers started to pack these products in foil to alleviate consumers’ concerns and be in line with safety standards. Because of this, sales are returning to normal.
Prices of agricultural products, especially fruits and vegetables, increased due to a lack of seasonal workers thanks to the closure of borders and due to lower crop harvesting volumes in the country. Consequently, retail revenue increases were visible for these fresh categories.
Alcoholic beverages, especially beer, were also affected. Retail sales are higher year-on-year, but in the more profitable HoReCa segment, there is still a significant year-on-year decline caused mainly by the small number of tourists and the intention of consumers to reduce spend. Despite the growth in the retail channel, total volumes have declined.