Why Aldi Costs More Than Tesco

16 December 2008

With the price of food on the rise, most of us are venturing to the nearest Aldi or LIDL, believing that we could save a few quid over the major supermarkets. But how much do we actually save? Apparently, not as much as we think.

Latest research claims that discounters actually work out more expensive than the 'big 4' supermarkets when it comes to purchase of basic household items.  The study by industry magazine The Grocer selected 33 out of 50 basic household items that were available across Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury's, Morrisons, Aldi, Lidl and Netto.  The cheapest items available in each store were added, and a final total basket value was tallied. According to The [Daily Mail]:

It found discount chain Aldi charged the most for a basket of basic shopping items, including bread, toilet rolls, washing-up liquid and wine, while Asda worked out the cheapest...At the same time, the study revealed that shopping at a budget store could leave consumers up to 61 per cent out of pocket than if they had stuck to own brand ranges at the standard supermarkets...

The study revealed that the same items that cost £19.10 in Asda would run you £11.66 more in Aldi, costing £30.76. Of all the budget stores, Lidl worked out the cheapest, with a basket costing £25.30. Does this mean we should be shopping around a bit more that we are in this climate?


  • Paul Nikkel EDITOR
    I bet this was paid for by some UK grocery conglomerate scared of losing custom to Aldi/Lidl/Netto ;)
  • Mike H.
    So, through analysis, I deduce ASDA is the cheapest if I want to get pissed, fat, or need a shit.
  • Ows
    The salient point in the original article has been glossed over though - these are comparisons between Aldi's standard products and (for example) Tesco's "Value" range of products - hence the price discrepancy. As Aldi's UK General Manager has stated, their product lines are the equivalent of Tesco/Asda/Morrisons' "Finest" range. To paraphrase the UK GM in a recent Radio interview: "Tesco have seven plain yoghurts - four branded, one Finest, one standard and a value. We have one, and it's our best one." I believe this is the point that's being missed - if everyone wanted to use Tesco "Value" bread and "Value" ham in a sandwich for lunch, there'd be some very ill people around! Frankly, I'll stick with Aldi for my "discounted" goods - at least it's a quality product!
  • Dan
    It doesn't take a genius to realise that each shop will have something cheaper than its competitors (to a comparible level of quality - finest/normal/shite). This is just another biased price comparison. I can't say my missus has ever sent me off to the shops to get "Beer, Bog roll, Chocolate, Wine & Bread"
  • Ryouga
    Its all about quality, sure Lidl/Aldi is dearer but then at same time they are comparing Tesco value and not Tesco regular which would be the same or more expensive, I find Aldi/Lidl food better than the value range at the main supermarket and equal to the own brand but not value products.
  • Dave
    this comparison is okay if you are looking for the absolute cheapest, but it certainly DOES NOT apply fi you want value for money in quality, they should be comparing Aldi prices against Tesco better range, not there value stuff..
  • Joe
    What a completely unfair biased piece of crap this article is. Totally subjective, doesn't take into account a whole host of factors and who the hell decides which products make the 'essentials' list...I bet this has been selectively chosen to favour the Big 4 supermarkets, plus its in the daily mail its probably just zenophobia cos Aldi and Lidle are german...
  • Old t.
    An 800g White loaf at Tesco for 40p-I think not!
  • Mark
    "So, through analysis, I deduce ASDA is the cheapest if I want to get pissed, fat, or need a shit." Made laugh.
  • Bob
    There was a nice article in The Times the other weekend, they compared Aldi & Lidl value products against the equivalent ASDA/Tesco/Sainsburys products, the Germanic products were more than double the meat content and without as many preservatives and meal fillings for a fraction more of the price, their conclusion was that UK supermarkets are rip-offs, which was a bit harsh because if you buy crap then what do you expect?
  • NA
    This article just goes to show how much crap they think they can tell us, and how we will accept it.
  • Gus
    finest/normal/shite classic!
  • Neville C.
    I don't know where they get they figures from, I've bought toilet paper at Netto it's usually 9 rolls for about 1.50
  • chrisg
    Some clearly misleading pricing here. For example, Lidl Grafenwalder Beer 500ml is currently 65p (and has never been more than 75p) (and, as basic pils goes, it's not bad at all!)
  • Bernard B.
    Saw a similarly appalling effort on the fool.co.uk website. Obviously failing to compare 'like for like'. Lidl/Aldi/Netto offer far superior products to the big supermarker own brand value ranges. I for one will stick with my 'bit of both' methodology. Avoiding those money grabbing c***s at TESKO of course.
  • chrisg
    I genuinely shop each week at Morrisons, Somerfield, M&S, Sainsburys, Waitrose and Lidl. Get the best of the bargains at each, and get the stuff that's never on offer from the best shop. Example: Mangos are 20p each at my local Lidl, yet £1.29 from Waitrose. Sainsbury's have some excellent hams, but Lidl's are far worse and in some cases more expensive. It really does pay to shop around.
  • David
    I agree with above comments and bread at for 40p, not true any longer. But we go to Tesco for range, choosing value for some items and finest for treats. Also supermarkets are wise to the comparison system and can use loss-leaders to bring in business.
  • Lenard
    Also you always end up spending more at Asda/Tesco/etc than you do at Aldi because when you're shopping at the former you end up buying tons of extra crap you never went for, had no intention of buying and don't actually need!
  • Peter H.
    This survey is utter tripe. Anybody who has purchased a range of products will realise that the quality of Aldi is higher than the Big 4. Of course there is the odd item your not so keen on but tell me a supermaket where that doesn't happen. I'm not so keen on Lidl and I think Aldi definately has the edge on quality over its nearest rival. If you take the quality of the product into account then Aldi is most likely the best value of the lot. If you just want the cheapest shoppong trolley full of lard, then ASDA will remain your best bet. The supermarket I think is the worst for value is Sainsburys. Sorry but despite what people say, I don't find their products that good yet there is an air of snobbery amongst its customers. Sainsburys talk a good talk but in my eyes they fail to deliver, why are they dearer than Tesco on branded goods? Makes you wonder whether their own brand range is dearer due to quality, or are you being conned!!! I will continue to stick to the superior albeit limited range from Aldi.
  • Andi
    So you say a can of beer costs £2.29 at Lidl, but 91p at Tesco, right? I'm just supping a can of Carlsberg from the fridge that I bought at Lidl. I paid £9 for 16 x 500ml cans. And believe me, I'm sober enough to know that that's just 56.25p each, which is not so far off half the price of Tesco and a quarter of the price quoted in this survey. Come on, pull the other one!
  • Irish P.
    [...] of food in lidl and aldi was dearer than tesco! NCA Price Comparison Survey - September 2008 Why Aldi Costs More Than Tesco | BitterWallet Its one thing saying Aldi and Lidl are cheaper, its another backing this up. We cannot afford to [...]
  • John
    2 and 3 years ago I regularly shopped at Aldi as it was decidedly much cheaper on certain goods, especially outdoor and diy and some food. However, since it has made the 'news' many items are not just dearer, they've doubled. Take this week, diy items like car bulb sets at £4.99 (I have 2 sets of these purchased previously at £2.99), windscreen wiper blades are also now £4,99 - I used to have several sets at a time when they were under 2 quid. Ok, that was very cheap, but there are many items that Aldi has increased, so when you come to the till total you realise you may have had a bargain few vegatables at 69p a pack, but they've taken the rest from your other purchases! No, they aren't any cheaper than any of the others. The only way to win is to be choosy and shop at ALL the supermarkets, but who has the time to do that?

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