"Belgian price war down to only two contenders"

Colruyt Laagste Prijzen

The differences in prices between the supermarket chains in Belgium are increasing, consumer organisation Test-Aankoop found out. Market leader Colruyt and Dutch Albert Heijn are on top, while Delhaize, Carrefour and Makro see the top two speed away.

 

Colruyt cheapest

In its annual supermarket review, Test-Aankoop declares Colruyt to be Belgium's cheapest - not a coincidence for a chain that calls itself "Colruyt Lowest Prices" and offers a lowest price guarantee. Two trends are noticeable: Colruyt is particularly profitable when it comes to major brands and its prices are even lower if there is an Albert Heijn nearby - Colruyt has a pricing based on which competitors are around. As prices for major brands go, Carrefour (hypermarkets), Cora, Delhaize and Makro offer "average" prices, while Carrefour Market (Groupe Mestdagh) and Intermarché are more expensive. Top of the pricing tree is Match.

 

In a mixed basket of A-brands and private label, that best mirrors average consumers' behaviour, Colruyt wins the race before... its own pick-up service Collect&Go. Third is Albert Heijn (+ 2 %), while the complete list is in the table below. The differences with the other brands are striking: Carrefour hypermarkets follow with + 12 %, while the trio of Delhaize, Makro and Carrefour Market are 17 % more expensive. This is remarkable, as the trend in the last years was one of decreasing differences.

 

Two remarks accompany this comparison table: the fact that Jumbo entered the Belgian market too late to be included, and the fact that Aldi and Lidl do not have a full range of A-brand products and are therefore excluded as well.

 

 Colruyt (near Albert Heijn)  100
 Collect & Go (near AH PUP)  102
 Albert Heijn  102
 Colruyt (not near AH)  105
 Collect & Go (not near AH PUP)  107
 Carrefour Hyper  112
 Delhaize  117
 AD Delhaize  117
 Makro  117
 Carrefour Market  117
 Intermarché  118
 Carrefour Market Mestdagh  119
 Match  128

 

Test-Aankoop compared the prices of 24,000 products during the first nine months of 2019, in all ranges and all chains. This year the research method was updated, with certain chains giving full transparency while Test-Aankoop actively screened the other chains' online prices. As Spar and Okay do not publish their prices online, they are not added to the table.