Greencore Grocery has launched a range of British casserole-style sauces into the UK market under licence from Aunt Bessie's.

Launched initially as an exclusive Tesco range, to be sold only in the chain's 102 Yorkshire stores, the range of six sauces comprises Chicken Casserole, Honey & Mustard Casserole, Shepherd's Pie, Sausage Casserole, Beef in Ale Casserole and Beef in Red Wine Casserole.

Made with no artificial colours, flavourings or preservatives, the sauces are available in 500g glass jars inspired by a "traditional casserole dish", the company said.

The launch will be supported by a 25%-off promotion, along with a promotion, both due to run for six weeks from this month.

Matthew Jenkins, marketing director of Greencore Grocery, said: "We believe the new range will bring something new and different to the traditional sauces category and help to boost its growth, whilst establishing Aunt Bessie's credentials in the cooking sauces market as the choice for customers wanting to create a delicious British meal."

Asked why the sauces are only available in Tesco stores in the North Yorkshire region initially, a spokesperson for Greencore told just-food: "The range has been launched in over 100 North Yorkshire stores under the 'Tesco Local' sourcing initiative because this was the quickest route to market for Tesco. This initial 100 store launch will also act as a trial before nationwide roll-out."

Greencore said Morrisons have confirmed a nationwide launch of the Aunt Bessie's sauces in February.

"There is a clear gap in the market for British cooking sauces," the spokesperson continued. "There are currently no sauces brands with a strong British positioning, and it is a sector that is massively underperforming compared to ready meals for example, where it is the largest sector."

The sauces have an RRP of GBP1.48 (US$2.15).