Asda to invest over £73m this year in tackling cost of living crisis

The UK's third-largest supermarket chain, Asda is to invest over £73m in tackling the cost of living crisis for its customers and colleagues.

In a sweeping range of measures aimed at supporting UK households tackling inflation, the supermarket has today confirmed that it has ‘dropped and locked’ the price of over 100 family favourites and will lock the price down until the end of the year.

It has also confirmed to 120,000 hourly paid shop floor colleagues that their pay will increase to £10.10 per hour from July.

The move comes as Asda’s Pulse of the Nation survey found that 9 in 10 consumers are concerned about inflationary pressures to their budgets and 87% are worried that grocery prices will increase this year.

Meanwhile, Asda’s latest Income Tracker has recorded its biggest ever drop in disposable income in March shows that the nation’s lowest income families had 74% less disposable income in March compared to the same time last year.

Products covered by the ‘dropped and locked’ promise include a range of household favourites, including fresh fruit and vegetables, fresh meat, store cupboard favourites like rice and noodles as well as soft drinks, desserts and frozen products.

On average, prices will reduce by 12% and include staples such as John West tuna, dropping by 14% from £3.50 to £3, or 500g of Asda easy cook rice which has dropped by 25% down to 75p from £1.

The investment comes just weeks after the supermarket announced a multi-million investment into a new, budget-friendly essentials range - ‘Just Essentials at Asda’.

The value focused range, which launches later next month and replace Asda’s existing Smart Price products, will offer customers over 300 low price essential products and has been designed to ensure shoppers can keep the family fed, clean and watered on the tightest budget.

For Asda’s colleagues, the increase in hourly rate to £10.10 per hour from July will give them an additional 60p on top of the National Living Wage and is further supported by a 10% colleague discount in stores and online and additional supplement for colleagues in London stores.

Colleagues also have the opportunity to achieve a bonus of up to £400 at the end of the year. This combined package will make Asda the highest paying UK supermarket.

In addition, working with its charity, the Asda Foundation, Asda’s community champions will help to invest over £2m in local grassroots with a particular focus on supporting those most impacted by the cost of living crisis, by funding activities such as summer holiday clubs and community events.

Mohsin Issa, Co-owner of Asda, said, “We know that household budgets are being squeezed by an increasing cost of living and we are committed to doing everything we can to support our customers, colleagues and communities in these exceptionally tough times.

“We’re standing side by side with the families and communities who are juggling so many demands at the moment. We’re taking unprecedented action to give families some additional stability and certainty in their weekly shopping by lowering and locking over 100 prices until the end of the year.

'We’re also proud to be investing in increasing the pay for our hardworking store colleagues and continuing to support the communities we are part of.”