The top 10 Christmas items that shoppers forget

Prosecco and mince pies are Christmas staples PICTURE: Central England Co-op

Prosecco and mince pies are Christmas staples PICTURE: Central England Co-op - Credit: Archant

New research from Central England Co-op reveals the top 10 Christmas items that shoppers are likely to forget

Sprouts in bacon PICTURE: Central England Co-op

Sprouts in bacon PICTURE: Central England Co-op - Credit: Archant

Head to any supermarket on Christmas Eve and you’re sure to encounter the usual crowds of last-minute shoppers. The frantic Christmas Eve rush to the shops has become something of a festive tradition in many households, with a brave family member heading down to the crowded supermarket aisles to grab those Christmas dinner essentials. Whether it’s gravy granules or cranberry sauce, something always manages to get left off the all-important Christmas shopping list, throwing families into a last-minute panic.

Central England Co-op has analysed Christmas Eve sales from the past few years to find out exactly which items people just can’t go without. The retailer has whittled down the purchases into a top 10, revealing the most sought-after items that fly off the shelves in the hours before the shops shut on December 24. Market research has shown that sales tend to peak late in the day on Christmas Eve, as customers remember that they have forgotten that one vital ingredient that makes everything tick on the big day.

Unsurprisingly, Co-operative prosecco and mince pies are the most popular items on Christmas Eve, with the rest of the top 10 filled out with store-cupboard items that people do not realise they have run out of. Christmas dinner staples such as sprouts, gravy granules and foil for the turkey are also flung into shopping baskets on December 24, as customers rush to make sure that nothing ruins their big Christmas day meal. Bacon also features highly on the list, with meat-lovers hoping to treat themselves to a special breakfast while youngsters wake early to open their presents. Gift essentials including batteries and sellotape also come close to selling out due to last-minute present purchases and frantic Christmas Eve wrapping. The last two items to fill out the top 10 are lemons and limes as people enjoy a festive tipple, and Christmas crackers for those who want to make sure the day goes with a bang.

Mark Hill, head of product and category at Central England Co-op, said: “This fascinating insight showcases how easy it is for all of us to forget one vital item and have to rush out and stock up on Christmas Eve.

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“We work hard at Central England Co-op to ensure that out shelves are stocked full of all the everyday essentials to make sure that the big day is a success, alongside a range of great treats to make the festive season extra special. Central England Co-op also aims to cut the stress out of Christmas and cut out any last-minute panics by staying open late to offer everything shoppers need.

So even if people do forget their festive favourites – or even their everyday essentials – customers can be confident that help is at hand right up until the last minute on Christmas Eve and throughout the festive season at Central England Co-op stores.”

On Christmas Eve, all Co-op convenience stores will be open until 8pm, offering a helping hand to stressed-out shoppers. Whether you need foil for the turkey or a new roll of sellotape, the Central England Co-op is there to soothe your last-minute festive panics. Keep up-to-date with the latest food offers this Christmas by visiting and find out what times local stores are opening and closing at

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Top 10 Christmas Eve purchases

1. Mince pies

2. Prosecco

3. Sprouts

4. Lemons and limes

5. Bacon

6. Batteries

7. Foil and cling film

8. Sellotape

9. Gravy granules

10. Christmas Crackers

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