Lidl has beaten budget rival Aldi to be crowned the UK’s cheapest supermarket of 2020 in the annual survey by consumer choice group Which?
But it was a close call, as price difference between the two supermarket giants was just 34p.
As part of its annual research, Which? tracked 45 own-label and branded products in eight major supermarkets for at least 100 days and calculated the average price of each item over the year, as well as the total average cost of all the items.
Lidl came in at £42.67, with Aldi following behind at £43.01.
The 2020 list is actually the first time that Lidl has been included in the Which? survey, which now includes own-label products as well as household-name brands.
The two supermarkets have boomed in popularity in recent years – with Lidl now operating upwards of 800 UK stores and Aldi around 900 – and both chains are continuing to chip away at the market share of other established rivals.
ASDA came third in the survey, but by a margin of over £5 – at £48.71.
Tesco was next on the list at £53.30, then Morrisons at £53.61, and Sainsbury’s rounded out the rest of the major chains at £56.38, with the most expensive options revealed to be Waitrose (£68.69) and its affiliated delivery service Ocado (£66.83).
There were big differences in the price of some items at the cheapest and dearest supermarkets.
Experts helped Which? compare own-label items to make sure they were as similar as possible in terms of factors such as quality.
For example, Which? found that Waitrose’s own-label cooked and peeled prawns were £4.60 on average, when the equivalent was £1.99 at Lidl, and six own-label free-range eggs at Waitrose were £2.47 on average, with the equivalent £1.27 at Lidl.
One significant advantage also identified by Which? that the established supermarket brands benefited from this year is home delivery – something that has seen a large spike in demand during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic – and retailers that already operated online were generally able to scale up their deliveries rapidly, with most doubling their capacity in just a few months.
Tesco was noted to have more than doubled delivery capacity during spring 2020, to 1.4 million slots a week.
While Lidl and Aldi both do not have dedicated in-house delivery services in the UK, Aldi is however sending food parcels out to vulnerable people during the crisis.