Asda scrapping Smart Price budget range in favour of larger discount scheme named Just Essentials

Leeds-based supermarket chain Asda is scrapping its Smart Price range as the grocer saw growth slow due to customers returning to pre-pandemic habits.

The supermarket firm, which was bought by the Issa brothers and backers TDR Capital last year, said it will axe its Smart Price range and replace it with new Just Essentials by Asda products.

It said the new budget range will comprise 300 products, a 50 per cent increase on the current Smart Price range.

Sign up to our Business newsletter

Just Essentials products will initially arrive in stores from May and be rolled out to replace Smart Price over the summer.

Pic by James Hardisty

Asda said it has designed the new range with consideration for customer concerns over the cost of living crisis.

It comes a week after the Office for National Statistics said inflation jumped to a 30-year-high of 6.2 per cent in February, with food inflation at 5.3 per cent.

Mohsin Issa, co-owner of Asda, said: “We understand that customers are increasingly worried about the cost of living and want help to keep their grocery bills in check, whilst still being able to buy healthy and nutritious food for their families.

“Our new Just Essentials range has been specifically designed with this in mind, combing our lowest prices with a much larger and more diverse range of great value products to meet all household needs.”

The shake-up of its product range came as Asda revealed revenues of £20.4 billion in 2021, representing a 0.6 per cent increase in like-for-like sales, excluding fuel.

However, the retailer highlighted that like-for-like sales declined by 2.9 per cent in the three months to December compared with the same period a year earlier, as customers returned to pubs and restaurants. Online sales also declined by 5 per cent in 2021 against the previous year.