The HTA June Market update indicates changes in consumer behaviour as lockdown measures ease
by Kristin Tadlock
The Horticultural Trades Association’s (HTA) Market Update report for June shows that nationally garden centre sales were up 30% in May from May 2020 and up 23% from May 2019.
Despite it being the wettest May since 1967, outdoor container sales were up 54% and garden/gardening sales were up 28% compared to the same month in 2019.
Consumer confidence has bounced back to pre-pandemic levels and many HTA members feel optimistic, with 77% indicating that they expect sales volumes to increase over the next 12 months and 46% expect to increase the number of staff employed.
Average Transaction Values in the garden store were up 34% vs May 2019, and whilst catering sales and footfall are down overall, average transaction values 54% higher than May 2019 indicate customers are spending more when they do visit the café/restaurant.
Since the government roadmap saw further easing of restrictions in the latter half of May, however, garden centres saw a decrease in sales. This could be indicative that the exceptional demand the industry has been experiencing is beginning to tail off.
As the vaccine rollout continues to progress, COVID remains the top issue occupying consumers concern, though concerns for the environment, pollution and climate change have shown significant increase. The HTA is working with member businesses to navigate these issues.