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Online food price war – Checkers Sixty60 vs Pick n Pay Asap! vs Woolies Dash vs Spar2U

| Economic factors

Consumers in South Africa increasingly use grocery delivery services, with Checkers Sixty60 currently the cheapest on the market.

South Africa is seeing a huge boom in grocery delivery services as South Africans crave the ease of ordering everything online.

In its financial results for the 52 weeks ended 30 June 2023, Woolworths said that the rollout of Wollies Dash saw online sales increase by 28.5% – contributing 3.8% of total South African sales.

Pick n Pay also noted that online sales grew by 72%, with on-demand sales growing by 100%, in its financial results for the year ended 26 February 2023.

The group said that this growth was driven by Asap! and the new partnership with MR D that launched in October 2022.

Amidst the growing popularity of grocery delivery services, BusinessTech has compared the prices of 15 items across Checkers Sixty60, Pick n Pay Asap!, Woolies Dash and Spar2U.

Overall, Checkers Sixty60 was the cheapest across all retailers, totalling just over R640.00.

Checkers Sixty60 was also the cheapest for the five non-food items, totalling just under R230.00

However, Spar2U was the cheapest retailer across the ten food items and was the only retailer under R400 for the segment.

On the other end of the scale, Woolies Dash was the most expensive, with a total basket of almost R200 more than Checkers Sixty60.

The luxury retailer was also the most expensive in the food and non-food segments. However, it was the cheapest retailer for a 2kg white sugar.

Below is a comprehensive breakdown of the prices or orders from the various retailers:

Items Checkers Sixty60 Pick n Pay Asap! Woolies Dash Spar2U
Baked Beans R10.99 R13.99 R14.99 R11.99
Tuna in brine R21.99 R21.99 R27.99 R23.99
Tomato sauce R24.99 R32.99 R44.99 R28.99
Mixed Veg (frozen) R34.99 R32.99 R54.99 R29.99
Cooking Oil R84.99 R79.99 R79.99 R74.99
Chutney R24.99 R24.99 R53.99 R30.99
White Sugar R59.99 R59.99 R57.99 R59.99
Apples R32.99 R26.99 R37.99 R14.99
Cabbage R16.99 R19.99 R21.99 R21.99
Long life milk R99.99 R99.99 R109.99 R104.99
Food Total R412.90 R413.90 R504.90 R396.90
Dishwash Liquid R24.99 R24.99 R34.99 R22.99
Refuse Bag R34.99 R41.99 R52.99 R40.90
Bleach R16.99 R16.99 R34.99 R16.99
Toilet Paper R129.99 R134.99 R174.99 R147.99
A Purpose Cleaner R21.99 R22.99 R34.99 R25.99
Non-Food Total R228.95 R241.95 R332.95 R254.86
Total R641.85 R655.85 R837.85 R651.76

Methodology and important notes

The prices were sourced from the respective stores’ apps. As several products may be sold in all the stores, we exclusively looked at house brands – just like our conventional shopping price war.

Unlike the other retailers, Spar is franchised, and prices differ across stores. We thus entered a Spar in Centurion as our source of products.

In addition, the cheapest house brand was used across the various retailers. For instance, we used the price of No Name products at Pick n Pay instead of the more “luxurious” PnP brand if an item was available in both.

Sizing also differed across stores, but we went on the assumption that consumers purchase full items from stores. Therefore, Checker’s 750ml tomato sauce is compared to Woolworths’ 565 gram tomato sauce.

Despite being cited by the Outlier as the cheapest retailer to buy groceries in South Africa, Makro’s online delivery service was not included in this comparison.

Although some of Makro’s house brand items, such as its baked beans and refuse bags, were the cheapest across all the retailers, we could not find house brand versions of all the items in the comparison.

Fresh produce – cabbage and granny smith apples – could also not be found on the Makro app.

And finally, this comparison looks exclusively at price and not quality, as everyone’s taste is subjective.

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