Condom sales have increased in countries such as China, where restrictions are easing, according to consumer goods giant Reckitt.
The Double Gains
Durex revenues increased by “double digits” in the first quarter of 2021 compared to the same period the previous year. However, as fewer consumers stocked up on cold and flu medications, demand for health goods dropped overall.
Reckitt’s boss states that the sales of Lysol and Dettol were high as hygiene habits changed. People were having less sex because of the coronavirus outbreak, as they partially feared at the start of the pandemic last year. However, when social distancing rules were relaxed in Summer, the company states that the sales of Durex surged.
Sales in the nutrition group, which includes the infant formula brand Enfa, dropped 12.3 percent in the first quarter, but hygiene sales increased 21.1 percent, bringing the total sales for the first three months of the year to £3.5 billion, down 1.1 percent.
“Demand for Lysol and Dettol continues to be high as consumers remain concerned about the spread of the virus and see the use of our goods, as well as improved hygiene habits, as a way of protecting their health and regaining normalcy in their lives,” said Laxman Narasimhan, CEO.
He stated that the company would continue to monitor trends in customer behavior and demand for various goods as the pandemic progressed.
The company announced a 16.4 percent drop in sales of items such as Nurofen and Strepsils, which are used to treat colds and flu. It reported that flu cases were down by up to 90%, even though customers had already stocked up last year.
Mr. Narasimhan went on to say that in countries where there are few coronavirus cases and high vaccination rates, people are less likely to wash their hands or use hand sanitizers, though use is still higher than it was before the pandemic.
Sales of Dettol, for example, increased significantly in India, which is currently dealing with a surge in Covid cases, but decreased in China.
“Sexual hygiene” products have seen a large rise in sales in countries such as China, as well as parts of the United States and Europe.
According to executives, the large rise in sexual hygiene is expected to expand in other countries as a result of lockdowns and social distancing measures that enable more consumers to use their items. The findings show how spending patterns change as lockdown policies are relaxed.
As the lockdown lifts and the vaccine rollout continues, market research firm Kantar reported on Tuesday that UK shoppers are making more trips to supermarkets and purchasing fewer online. Its most recent figures show that since the peak of the pandemic, online supermarket revenues have risen by half, to 46 percent. Meanwhile, in the four weeks leading up to April 18, the number of trips to the grocery store increased by 4% month over month.
Older shoppers, according to Kantar, accounted for much of the increase in footfall, with much of the over-65 population now vaccinated. More than 33 million people in the UK have received at least one dose of coronavirus vaccine as part of the country’s largest-ever immunization campaign.
Overall retail sales increased by 5.7 percent to £31.6 billion in the 12 weeks ending April 18, slowing from the pace of growth seen a year earlier when consumers panic-bought at the beginning of the crisis.