Swiss retail giant Migros is to join Associated Marketing Services (AMS), the Netherlands-based international strategic buying alliance.

The alliance encompasses some 10,000 stores in 14 European countries and includes Ahold, UK grocer Morrisons, Finland-based group Kesko and Spanish retailer Caprabo.

The aim of the alliance is to ensure the best terms and conditions for buying across a range of food products, such as sugar, rice and pasta, as well as extensive non-food ranges.

"Thanks to the higher volume of buying, we can make savings which we will pass on directly to our customers," said Migros marketing director Urs Riedener.

However, the Swiss co-operative's buying policy will still exclude any product that includes cage eggs or does not meet Swiss legal requirements.

The total Migros business has sales of more than CHF20bn (US$17.9bn). The company also operates a food manufacturing business, which supplies a substantial proportion of the goods sold in its stores.

The business includes six major groups, such as meat subsidiary Micarna, and bakery arm Jowa.