Cash-strapped shoppers are "re-adopting a strategy of switching to cheaper grocery brands to help stay within their budgets", according to Chris Morley, managing director at Nielsen for the UK and Ireland. His comment came after the latest Consumer Confidence Survey (CCS) revealed that the proportion of British shoppers who feel they have no spare cash has reached a new all-time high of 32%. According to the survey, which is a joint study from Nielsen and the British Retail Consortium, 71% of people say they have changed their shopping habits to try to cut down household expenses, with 65% of them switching to cheaper grocery brands.

Of course, swapping big brands for cheaper ones is a recognised way of saving money but the number of people switching has not been this high since April 2009, when it was slightly higher at 68%.

The CCS reveals that consumers’ biggest concern is the increase in their utility bills and food prices (14% of respondents), followed by the rising cost of fuel (13%).