Discount supermarket group Aldi said on Monday its Christmas performance in Ireland and the UK was boosted by record sales of its premium range and strong demand for beer, wine and spirits.
Its sales were up 8.1% versus 2019, before the pandemic impacted trading.
The group, privately owned by Aldi Sud, is Britain's fifth largest supermarket group with a 7.7% market share.
However, its share edged lower at some points during the pandemic, partly due to a lack of a significant online business.
'Specially Selected' Range
Aldi UK highlighted the performance of its premium 'Specially Selected' range in December, which notched up its highest ever sales, as well as demand for alcoholic drinks.
'Kevin the Carrot' Ad
Aldi said its 'Kevin the Carrot' television advertising campaign chimed with consumers and it sold more than 43 million mince pies, 21 million pigs-in-blankets and 118 million Brussels sprouts.
It said shoppers also bought more than 5.5 million bottles of champagne, sparkling wine and prosecco.
Aldi and fellow German rival Lidl have grown rapidly in Britain over the last decade, forcing the established big four supermarkets - market leader Tesco, Sainsbury's Asda and Morrisons - to cut prices and compete more aggressively.
Unlike their bigger rivals Aldi and Lidl are still opening lots of new stores.
Aldi said in September it will invest £1.3 billion ($1.8 billion) in Britain over the next two years, opening a new store every week.
"As we look ahead, the top priority for most families this year will be managing their household budgets in the face of rising living costs," said CEO Giles Hurley.
British consumers are about to be squeezed on spending, with energy prices, food inflation, mortgage costs and taxes all due to jump in 2022, leaving retailers looking at a much tougher environment.