The Co-op has announced a £16m programme of food store openings and refits in Wales this year.

It will open 12 new convenience stores and launch “major makeovers” at about 20 others.

The first new outlet to open in Wales this year was in Rossett, near Wrexham, last Friday – a shop with a sales area of nearly 1,900 sq ft.

Other new stores will be in Swansea, Cwmbach, Rhayader, Monmouth, Radyr, Pembroke, Llanelli and Machen.

A spokesman said further locations were still to be confirmed.

Relaunches so far this year include Talgarth, Barmouth, St David’s Park, in Cardiff, Old Colwyn and Holyhead.

Those scheduled for refit later this year include Ferndale, in the Rhondda Valley, Carmarthen, Llangennech – in the area of Llanelli – Llandudno, Cardiff, Heol Y Deri, Ruabon Road, in Johnstown, and Wrexham.

Tina Mitchell, managing director for the Co-op, Wales, said continued investment in the brand and its business was delivering benefits right across Wales.

Consumers were responding to its commitment to double the number of local suppliers, she added.

“Quality, trust and provenance are key for customers and we are working closely with smaller producers. It is their traditions, passion, and innovation which makes their products loved locally, and as a community retailer we are committed to championing great Welsh food and drink,” said Mitchell.

Meanwhile, the Co-op will sell only 100% British own-brand fresh beef, chicken, pork, lamb, bacon and turkey from next month.

It claims to already be the only retailer to use British meat in all its chilled ready meals, pies and sandwiches.

The meat initiative follows the awarding last December of contracts to 11 smaller or, micro, breweries to supply about 80 of its Welsh stores, including the Great Orme Brewery, Boss Brewing (Swansea), Tiny Rebel (Newport), Gower Brewery and Glamorgan Brewing Company.