Nisa retailers are reaping the rewards of the company’s increased focus on fresh produce, with sales up 21.9% across the group.

Fresh produce has been a key asset to developing the Nisa own label Heritage brand, which has enjoyed an unprecedented 8.8% growth in total sales year on year in terms of value. Iceberg lettuce performed particularly well with a 400% increase in sales, while red grapes benefited from a 330% increase.

Colin Smith of Nisa Pinkie Farm Convenience in Musselburgh, East Lothian, told Retail Express that more promotions have allowed independent retailers to compete with the multiples.

“Salad did really well through the summer, and we offered lettuce at 49p down from 99p and cucumber at 39p down from 75p,” he said.

“The focus on the freshness of the produce has also come a long way, even in the last two years. Two years ago, 70% of my produce was from a local supplier and the other 30% from Nisa. That’s completely reversed now. The Nisa range is much wider and the produce just looks better.”

Nisa trading director, Stewart Smith, said of the fresh success: “Our customers trust Nisa’s Heritage own label range for fresh and healthy produce, and we have responded to this trust by continuing to extend our range of salad, fresh fruit and vegetables together with items such as healthier ready meals.”

Since Nisa upped its focus on fresh, key products have seen huge growth:

Iceberg lettuce sales have risen by 400%

Red grapes sales are up by 330%

Cucumber sales have grown by 240%

Green grape sales are up by 100%