Aldi sold 55 million individual mince pies over a Christmas which saw British shoppers spend record amounts at the German chain.

UK sales in the four weeks to December 24 topped £1 billion for the first time in the company's history, and marked a 7.9% rise on the same period in 2018, Aldi revealed.

As well as mince pies, Britons also bought 22 million pigs in blankets, and more than two million Christmas puddings.

READ MORE: The Scots designer to the stars who found fame on German TV

The company's mince pies are sold in packs of six, gluten free pies in packs of four, while it also has a range of 12-packs of mini mince pies.

Aldi UK chief executive Giles Hurley said: "More customers than ever before shopped with us this Christmas because they knew Aldi offered unbeatable value on premium products and the lowest prices on festive essentials."

Alcohol sales in particular helped boost the supermarket's top line.

Shoppers bought 9.2% more beer compared with last Christmas, and sales of Aldi's Champagne and Prosecco rose by 14%.

According to data from Kantar, Aldi's share of the grocery market has rise by 1.2 percentage points to 8% since March 2017, making it the biggest supermarket outside the big four of Tesco, Sainsbury's, Asda and Morrisons.

The Co-op has 6.3% of the market, while Lidl and Waitrose have captured 6.1% and 4.8% respectively, according to the latest data, from early December.

High street doom-mongers have been proven wrong about their predictions for retailers, the founder of Mountain Warehouse has said.

Mark Neale, of the outdoor clothing and equipment seller, said his business had a record Christmas, for the 22nd year in a row.

Sales were up 16.2% to £95.8 million in the 13 weeks to December 29, the company confirmed.

Meanwhile, online sales rose more than 21%.

READ MORE: BrewDog opens world's first alcohol-free beer bar

Figures were boosted by a bumper Black Friday, the busiest day in the company's history, with total sales reaching more than £2.5 million.

It also chose that day to open four new stores - in the UK, Germany, New Zealand and Canada.

The openings take Mountain Warehouse's portfolio to nearly 400 stores around the world, with 50 more set to open this year.

Mr Neale said: "I'm delighted to be reporting record Christmas trading for the 22nd year running, despite the snap election and some economic uncertainties around Brexit.

"It demonstrates the success of our bricks and clicks strategy and proves the doom-mongers predicting the death of the high street are wrong."

Analysts expect more upbeat results as Tesco joins a row of UK retailers hoping to cash in on the Christmas period in a trading update this week.

The supermarket is likely to benefit from the festive season to start the decade on a strong note.

READ MORE: Lanarkshire property entrepreneurs keen to play part in regeneration drive in Scotland

"We expect a relatively upbeat trading update from Tesco on 9 January, confirming clear market outperformance in the UK over Christmas," said James Grzinic and Frederick Wild, analysts at Jefferies.

Shareholders will also be scouting for news on the company's proposed sale of its Asian business. Tesco said in December that it is reviewing its operations in Thailand and Malaysia after getting interest from potential buyers.

"With recent media coverage suggesting that the Asian process could materialise rather quickly, and investors more willing to engage on UK domestics, the stars look well aligned for a strong start to 2020 for the shares," Mr Grzinic and Mr Wild said.