Greggs has issued its first profit warning in over four years as the squeeze on household incomes puts another high street stalwart under pressure.
However, Britain’s biggest baker and delicatessen will continue its expansion. It intends to open 80 new outlets this year, and will refurbish 250 existing units.
Shares in Greggs fell 8.6% on Monday as the company admitted customers were spending less on its mix of pies, pastries and sandwiches.
“Last year was a year of like-for-like decline, the first for a long time,” said Roger Whiteside, chief executive of Greggs.
He added that footfall on the high street was down over the past year, and that the chain had noticed a trend of customers spending more at the start of each month, and less at the end as pay days approach.
Greggs currently has 1681 stores, and is focusing its expansion in areas away from the high street such as office blocks and service stations.