Gareth Hooton, owner of Hooton’s in Golborne, Warrington, says seasonal cakes and biscuits and Halloween-themed lines are helping to boost sales in his store.

“Customers seem to want to buy lots of sweet treats at the moment and our seasonal cakes and biscuits range has gone down very well. Things have been busy in the store during the kid’s half-term and for Halloween, but I think it’s hard for quite a lot of retailers at the moment.

“It’s been a bit of a funny time for sales - it’s all a bit up and down and hard to predict. Sales went up when the kids went back to school and then dipped before Halloween kicked in. Everything seems to be concentrated at month end, especially as we build up to the Christmas season.

“We’ve already replaced our Halloween stock with festive lines and updated our seasonal bay in store with lots of decorations and Christmas products.”

Star performers: “Soft drinks is always a strong category for us and we’ve noticed that people are buying more of the sugar free options, as a healthier alternative to their regular drinks. The Monster Ultra sugar free range has done particularly well.”

Successful NPD: “Halloween cakes, like Mr Kipling’s Terror Whirls and Cadbury’s Bonfire Logs, have been selling so well that we’ve been ordering a case a week recently. They’ve been so popular that they actually ran out of stock at our local cash and carry!”

Premier Foods relaunched its Mr Kipling Toffee Terror Whirls last month, to capitalise on demand for products that appeal during the Halloween occasion.

The limited-edition product is flavoured with toffee and buttercream and sold in packs of six (rrp £1). Cadbury Cakes also relaunched its Mini Bonfire Logs earlier this year.

The product combines the flavours of the brand’s mini roll, mixed with a honeycomb sponge and crème (rrp £1).