US retail giant Safeway has posted rising first-half sales and earnings.

The company, which operates 1,740 stores in the US and Canada, said yesterday (19 July) that operating profit rose 12% to US$783.4m for the six months to 16 June. Turnover, meanwhile, rose 5% to $19bn.

"Our positive sales and income trends continued in the second quarter, bolstered by strong performance from both new and seasoned Lifestyle stores," said Steve Burd, Safeway, chairman, president and CEO. "We are on track to deliver earnings toward the top end of the range we previously provided for the year."

Safeway also confirmed 2007 annual guidance for non-fuel, identical-store sales growth of 3.6% to 3.8%.