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Spar UK has already seen a sales uplift at its newly-launched flagship store in the UK, where it is trialling a “new style of convenience stores”.

At a trial store in Lancashire Spar has introduced a number of changes to its format, including a new fascia, colour scheme and the introduction of ambient modules for bread and produce to create an “authentic market feel”.

A spokesperson for the company told just-food that the group has used consumer research to inform its ranging and merchandising at the store. This has included broadening its fresh offering to include products such as sweet potatoes and avocados.

The company has also changed its store layout to provide consumers with inspiration for what to cook and buy to create entire meals, the spokesperson continued.  

“For this particular project they wanted to have a look at how ranging and merchandising in a small convenience store can work… A simple example would be if you go to the fresh meat counter on the shelving opposite you have the Italian on one shelf, then Indian, Chinese… So you pick up your fresh meat and then right there are the products to create today’s tea there beside you. This is quite a different approach.”

The spokesperson added that the aim was to “capitalise on what consumers don’t realise they need”.

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Spar said that it is yet to make a decision on whether the new concept will be rolled out to the rest of its store base, because it is waiting to see the results of the trial.

However, the spokesperson said that the initial results were encouraging. “Sales are great,” the spokesperson revealed.