Tangerines, salmon, and alcohol were most popular Christmas purchases ({{contentCtrl.commentsTotal}})

Tangerines.
Tangerines. Source: Anna Aurelia Minev/ERR

Tangerines were the most popular Christmas food purchased in Estonia in 2019 but salmon and trout, alcohol and non-alcoholic beer were also abundant, supermarkets told ERR.

Rivo Veski, communications manager at Selver, said sales at their stores increased over the Christmas holidays. However, looking at the whole of December then sales remained the same as in 2018.

The company sold approximately 150 tonnes of tangerines, but salmon fillets and trout were also popular.

"Among the best-selling products were Estonian cheese, cucumbers, bananas, Martin Asti - these products have also been featured in the rankings of previous years, so no new trends can be observed here," said Veski.

Although fish sales fell by up to a fifth year-on-year in the last few months of 2019, sales during the holiday period increased slightly. Gift cards and lottery tickets were also bought by a lot of people.

The most purchases were made in Selvers in Harju County, western Estonia and the islands. However, sales on e-Selver were particularly successful, increasing by more than 40 percent year-on-year.

Kaimo Niitaru, assortment director at Prisma, said at the end of December, they were selling extra tangerines in stores and had sold nearly 13 tons in each hypermarket. Among their most popular goods were bananas, milk, and potatoes, and fish.

"While tangerines were expected to be found in shopping carts, for example, grapes and oranges were also popular. The most popular beverages were water, beer, and mulled wine," he said.

Coop's communications manager Martin Miido said stores had higher sales than in 2018 but did not give exact numbers.

"Many different Christmas foods were bought, such as blood sausages, pork roast, tangerines, cabbage, jams, teas, cranberry and lingonberry jam, pumpkin etc," he said.

Miido said: "Probably due to the warm winter weather, ice cream sales are up 25 percent compared to December last year."

Compared to previous years, Coop saw an increase in sales of ready-to-eat food, which Miido says has been a trend for the past few years. However, Selver customers are not following the trend, and they purchased more fresh fruits, vegetables, and meat.

Coop's sales of alcohol increased, with the biggest surprise being the sales of non-alcoholic beers, which increased by nearly 50 percent compared to December 2018. 

More light alcohol and non-alcoholic products were also popular at Prisma. In Selver, the share of both strong and weak alcohol increased compared to the previous year.

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Editor: Helen Wright

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