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Christmas week supermarket sales set to top £3bn

LONDON - Researchers predict that December 23 will be the biggest shopping day for grocery retailers this year and should surpass last year's sales by up to 10%.

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As shops get busier in the run-up to Christmas, ACNielsen expects Christmas week supermarket sales to top £3bn because of further strong growth in grocery sales.

Mike Watkins, senior manager retailer services for ACNielsen, said Christmas week could possibly be some 10% up on last year as shoppers complete big trolley shops at out-of-town stores as late as Saturday afternoon.

Watkins said: "At this time of year we always see particularly strong sales in the non-food sector with shoppers taking advantage of good prices on electricals, clothes and homewear offered by the supermarkets."

He said the firm is also seeing a huge rise in fresh food sales as people buy into healthier eating patterns.

"Overall the grocery market is buoyant", he added.

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