Tesco sells a camera in the UK every 40 seconds, the supermarket giant has revealed to Amateur Photographer magazine.

The chain sold 19% more cameras in the last two months of 2008 than it did in the same period the year before, said a spokeswoman.

Tesco currently lists ten digital SLR cameras on its website. These include a Canon EOS 450D, Nikon D60, Pentax K20D and Samsung GX20. It also stocks a raft of mass market compact cameras.

Tesco operates 2,184 stores in the UK

Pressure on high street

Though the store declined to divulge camera sales in ?value? terms, the news is not likely to be welcomed by specialist camera retailers such as Jessops.

Jessops has endured a torrid time in recent years with more than 700 jobs axed and 81 stores closed in the wake of its strategic review.

However, as reported last week, brisk Christmas sales have boosted Jessops chances of riding out the credit crunch.

Supermarket ‘squeeze’

Commenting on the market in general terms, Experian business analyst Richard Jenkins said Jessops has suffered from being ?squeezed between the supermarkets and the internet?.

Yesterday Tesco reported ?record sales? over Christmas and the New Year ? an 11.6% increase in the seven weeks to 10 January.

The like-for-like sales figure – which adjusts for the effect of new stores opening during the year – rose 3.5% (adjusting for the VAT rate reduction).

In a statement Tesco said: ?Sales of digital products, including televisions and laptops, were particularly pleasing.?

The Tesco spokeswoman told us: ?Our camera sales are up 19% for November and December 2008 compared to the same period in 2007.? She added: ?We sell over one camera every 40 seconds.’

Tesco camera sales