Budgens retailers have the chance to give their customers "real food for today's communities" while building their business, the group has told members.

Speaking at the group's annual conference, Musgrave managing director Phil Smith said it had made substantial progress and was in a better position to take on the challenges of "a tough environment and a changing consumer".

He added: "Consumers are shopping more often, they're shopping locally and we therefore need to focus on ensuring that the Budgens brand is distinctive and relevant for its customers and bring real food for today's communities to life. We have to deliver that with a clarity that doesn't just delight our customers, but that also allows us to build strong and profitable businesses."

The event also saw Budgens Cosford, Shropshire, run by Bupa, Lata and Jay Gohil, named Budgens Store of the Year. They invested £1.5m in a refurbishment of their forecourt site.

Other awards went to Paul Wilks of Budgens Bedgrove (Neighbourhood Store), Kanna Mahunda of Budgens Stoneleigh (Essentials Store) and Guy Warner of Budgens Moreton in Marsh (Supermarket).