Premier is looking to help its independent retailers ’beat’ the discounters with big brand promotions and in-store theatre to increase store profitability.

Martyn Parkinson, brand director for Premier, believes the group’s new business strategy will cater for customers’ changing demand for reasonably-priced healthy products.

He said: “The discounters’ focus is on their own brands, but people still want the big brands, particularly in confectionery, crisps and soft drinks.

“Booker’s own range of fresh fruit, ready meals and meats offers great value and the quality that customers demand.”

As well as offering a comprehensive own label and big brand range, Booker has also introduced a redesigned offers leaflet and increased its ’Mega Deal’ initiative.

The group is also introducing regular promotions on trendy products such as protein bars and shakes.

Starting from this month, the number of ’Mega Deals’ in Premier stores will increase from four to six, and this could rise to eight over the next few months.

Scottish retailers can also choose to stock a range of Scotland-specific offers, to cater for local and regional demand.

Dennis & Linda Williams, owners of Broadway Convenience Store, are stocking the Scottish offers and have recently added a food to go counter to their store. The couple have made the improvements in order to compete against the new Aldi store opening in January 2018, just a few doors away.

After working with a catering development representative from Booker, Dennis and Linda are confident that they can profit from the discounter’s plans.

Linda said: “We were looking at introducing a food-to-go counter for sometime and we have managed to fit the counter into a small space that has everything in it. We see Aldi as an opportunity. Their store is going to bring even more people in to the area so we might be able to attract some of their customers, rather than the other way around.

“Aldi is always going on about how Scottish their range is, but the Scottish brands we stock are far more extensive. We don’t just want to compete against them, we want to beat them if we can.”