Specialist strategy helps M&S to food sales growth

A specialist strategy has helped Marks & Spencer to a rise in food sales in Q1 and its 23rd consecutive quarter of category growth. 

The recently launched 700-strong Taste of British Isles range and an ambitious store opening programme have enabled the retailer to grow food sales 3.2% year-on-year. Like-for-like food sales have grown 0.3% for the period.

Food sales for the retailer outperformed general merchandise sales, which only grew 0.2%, while like-for-like sales were down 0.4%.

Marc Bolland, chief executive, said: “Our food business delivered another excellent quarter, outperforming the market. We launched 700 new lines including the new Taste of the British Isles range. We are on track to open around 90 Simply Food stores this year, and continue to see good performance from stores opened to date.”

The Taste of the British Isles range includes Ultimate Pulled Pork Sausage Roll, Shropshire Fidget Pork Pie and Handcrafted Hog Roast Sausage Rolls, as well as The Grill Pork Belly Hog Roast with Kentish Apple Sauce & Crackling Crumb, which won the Best Overall Product Award at this year’s SuperMeat & Fish Awards.

The supermarket was also awarded Best Meat & Fish retailer at the event.

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