The Co-operative Group has signed its biggest sponsorship deal to date by becoming the official broadcast sponsor of ITV national weather.

The 12-month deal, announced today (13 December), will give the Co-op visual and verbal branding before and after the ITV national weather report, broadcast three times a day. Sponsorship will go live from 1 January and will replace the current sponsor - Topps Tiles.

The UK retailer said it plans to use the partnership to "raise awareness of what its shops have to offer locally and to encourage people to change their shopping habits".

"This is a great deal for The Co-operative food and gives us a unique opportunity to encourage consumers to think about the way they shop," Tim Hurrell, managing director for The Co-op's food business, said. "We are not looking at this deal as a simple media spend, but as a partnership that will give us a platform to promote local shops, local suppliers and seasonal food."