Good sledge sales fail to lift garden centre sales to January 20 above 2012 levels, as Tesco undercuts on price

Garden centre sales for the week ending 20 January were lower than in 2012, though snowy weather helped move sledges, salt and firewood.

Sledge sales went from nothing in the previous week to in the teens per centre, figures from garden centres supplied to Horticulture Week suggest.

But one garden centre owner complained that Tesco had undercut even the best cost prices garden centres could get.

He said: "Tesco screwed sledge sales as normal. Best buying price even with big volumes was around £5 and Tesco were retailing £4.99."

Sledge sales rose by 600 per cent, online retailer Amazon said.

At garden centres last week, aside from winter products, aquatic sales fell 20 per cent, bookshop sales fell 30 per cent and craft sales fell 30 per cent.

Food fell 20 per cent, sundries fell 30 per cent, gifts fell 40 per cent, houseplant sales halved, outdoor plant sales were one third of 2012, pets were down 15 per cent and restaurants were down 23 per cent.

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