Nielsen’s annual Retail and Shopper Trends Report identifies key trends and market shifts in the grocery sector in Asia Pacific. It shows that despite global economic uncertainty and slowing GDP growth, the annual packaged grocery sales in Asia Pacific increased 13% in the past year, and volume sales increased by 6%.

However, the prices remain the prime cause of concern to consumers and has led to small but more frequent trips to the grocery store.

“Although Asia Pacific economies have been relatively insulated from the wider global economic situation, shoppers across the region are looking to economise in order to reduce their grocery bill” said Peter Gale, Nielsen’s Managing Director of Retailer Services in the APMEA Region and Greater China, “In developed countries, this is primarily evidenced through heavier reliance on promotional offers, while in developing nations shoppers are focusing on buying only essential items.”

Other interesting insights included the huge expansion of convenience stores, with South Korea witnessing the greatest growth.

Private label products are still underdeveloped in Asia.

Although Asia has a strong growth in Internet penetration and usage across Asia Pacific, online sales of grocery products continues to lag behind other categories. Less than 10% of urban shoppers visit grocery retailers’ website regularly, except for South Korea.