Convenience store chain Spar has kicked off trials of a new foodservice concept that could be rolled out to its estate across the UK.
Since the end of February, the company has begun offering sandwiches, baguettes and salad dishes from a serve-over counter at its Glenwell store in Belfast.
Its own-label lunchtime range has been rebranded to ‘Daily Deli’ and if the trial is successful it plans to offer retailers six foodservice packages to choose from.
The packages will range from an entry-level offer similar to the one being trialled in Belfast to a more comprehensive offer that includes a served counter selling hot meals as well as a self-service option on the shop floor with sandwiches, baguettes, wraps and croissants.
Debbie Robinson, managing director of Spar UK, said: “Daily Deli is Spar’s answer to widening our presence in foodservice and giving our retailers more of an opportunity to offer foodservice in stores.”
The trial is not Spar’s first exposure to the foodservice arena. It already has franchise partnerships with the likes of Subway, Starbucks and Greggs, but hopes the latest move will enable it to create something new in-store as the foodservice and convenience markets converge.
“These are exciting times for Spar convenience stores as we create more modern and relevant stores for shoppers that tie in with the increasing focus on shopper missions,” she added.
There are more than 2,300 Spar stores in the UK with a combined turnover of £3 billion.