IGD’s latest Shopper Track research found that 61% of respondents expected to be slightly worse off or a lot worse off in the next 12 months, compared with just 27% in October 2010.
But only 32% said they would economise on food shopping, while 61% would cut back on eating or drinking out.
The survey also found that 32% mistakenly think January’s VAT increase applies to ‘all my food and groceries’, suggesting that the number of people planning to cut back on food shopping could be even less.
Joanne Denny-Finch, chief executive, IGD, said: “Shoppers are clearly feeling a lot more downbeat than they were last year and plan to do some major belt tightening. Shoppers of all ages and across all socio-economic groups are telling us they intend to cut back on non-essentials, such as going to the theatre or on holiday.
“Shoppers seem to be less keen to economise on their food and grocery shopping, with only a third (32%) citing this as a category they intend to spend less on. But this figure could be even lower, as our research also reveals that 32% of shoppers mistakenly believe that January’s VAT increase applies to all their food and grocery shopping.”