Video: Record Christmas sales for East of England Co-op

THE East of England Co-operative Society today reported its biggest ever trading week, with sales hitting �7.5million in the week leading up to Christmas.

The society, the largest independent retailer in East Anglia with more than 200 trading outlets across Suffolk, Essex and Norfolk, said the record figure had been helped by an increase of more than a third in sales of its locally sourced products.

And it added that the increase had been achieved despite a tough comparison with the previous year when its local food stores benefited from the reluctance of shoppers to travel further to larger supermarkets amid the Arctic weather conditions of December 2010.

Roger Grosvenor, group general kanager – trading, said: “The four week sales over Christmas and New Year have been exceptional, products have been flying off the shelves and our promotional activity has hit the right note.

“Despite fierce competition, and without the benefit of the snowy weather to keep shoppers local, the society has beaten last year’s trading figures, with a 2% like-for-like sales increase.

“All in all it has been a result beyond our expectations and I would like to say a big thank you to all our colleagues in stores, depots and service departments.”

The turnover of the society’s total retail business across Suffolk, Essex and Norfolk grew by a further 1% over the eight weeks ending January 7, 2012.

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Sales of the society’s “Sourced Locally” range saw a 34% increase on last year, including the best ever week for local sourcing.

Sourced Locally sales highlights over the last two weeks of December included nearly 39 tons of Fairfields Farm potatoes, nearly 9,000 packs of Havensfield Eggs, and some 4,500 bottles of Nethergate Brewery Sourced Locally ales which are brewed exclusively for the East of England Co-operative Society.

The society added that, on a like-for-like basis, its Christmas sales were 2% ahead, which it said showed that it was out performing and holding its own against stiff competition from the big four food retailers.

The East of England Co-op’s Sourced Locally initiative supports more than 110 local suppliers across Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex. Around 2,000 products are on offer including locally reared meat, fruit and vegetables, bread and cakes, wines and beers, and much more.