US speciality retailer The Fresh Market booked a jump in third-quarter sales and earnings this morning (28 November).

The Fresh Market said net sales rose 22.1% in the three months to 28 October, climbing to US$321.5m as new store openings and same-store sales growth contributed to the top line. Comparable sales rose 5.6% and the company opened six new locations in the period.

Net income rose 19% to $10.9m and EPS increased 18.5%, the company revealed.

In a separate announcement yesterday, the group said finance chief Lisa Klinger will leave the company next month, having accepted a “similar position” with a private equity-backed clothing retailer.

The Fresh Market said it plans to commence a recruitment process to appoint a successor. In the meantime, EVP and COO Sean Crane will take over as interim CFO, while VP and controller Jeff Short will act as interim principal accounting officer.

Shares in the group closed slightly down on the news yesterday, dropping from an open of $61.47 to $60.24.