The continued good weather and World Cup celebrations prompted a surge in food and drink sales over the three months to June 2018, latest data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) suggests.
Food stores were the best-performing retail industry sector over the period, with a 3.8% year-on-year growth in the quantity bought and a 5.9% growth in the amount spent.
In fact, 39 pence of every British pound was spent in food stores.
When comparing June 2018 with June 2017 for the quantity bought within the separate food sectors, alcohol and tobacco stores were the only sector to show a continued decrease in year-on-year sales (-3.9%).
The quantity of products bought in supermarkets grew at 3.0% year on year, while specialist food stores (including butchers and bakers) increased by 25.3% following a decline of 17.8% in June 2017.
While part of the growth was due to the recovery from a negative June 2017, retailers within specialist food stores also attributed the rise to the warm weather in June 2018, according to the ONS.
The Met Office has revealed that June 2018 was the third driest since 1910, in comparison with a year earlier, which was the eighth wettest since 1910.
In addition, food store prices saw a slight slowdown in June 2018.
Commenting on the retail sales figures, ONS senior statistician, Rhian Murphy said: “Retail sales grew strongly across the three months to June 2018 as the warm weather encouraged shoppers to buy food and drink for their BBQs.
“However, in June retail sales actually fell back slightly, with continued growth in food sales offset by declining spending in many other shops as consumers stayed away from stores and instead enjoyed the World Cup and the heatwave.”