Simply Fresh remains committed to growing the brand in Northern Ireland despite the closure of its first store in the province.

Store owner Malcolm Hall has opted to close the store in Holywood, in the outskirts of Belfast, just a few weeks after opening in December due to poor sales.

However, Simply Fresh said it was in talks with other retailers interested in taking on the unit.

A spokesperson for Simply Fresh said: “A full review of the local area and its potential for a new store was undertaken prior to its development.

“However, sales since the store opened have been lower than anticipated and the store owner has been unable to continue financing his business. Therefore he has reluctantly taken the decision to close the store with immediate effect.

“We are very disappointed with this outcome. However, Simply Fresh remains committed to growing the brand and supporting independent retailers across Northern Ireland.”

Prior to closure, the store placed a strong emphasis on local and artisan products and suppliers, and featured eco-friendly refill stations for both olive oil and Ecover detergents.