Budgens has learnt lessons from the major multiples which will enable it to meet customers needs better than they can, says senior controller for Fresh Foods Steve Carter. The chain is adopting initiatives on pricing and range that are available in the big supermarkets, as it goes head to head for market share. It is preparing to launch a premium range similar to those offered by Sainsbury through Taste the Difference and Tesco's Finest, and extend its hot to go range to include pasta. Safeway's WOW principle is being mimicked for special offers, Carter said. Budgens is already "ahead of the game" on organics, with between 2% and 5% of its overall range organic. And with an estate of 234 stores, it is also more capable of tailoring stores to fit demographics, he added. Carter said: "At Budgens we can be more responsive and quicker to market with new products and ideas than Sainsbury because our roots in the community are strong. Increasingly we will be matching the contents of our stores to local customer profile." Budgens is trialling ranging initiatives at its refurbished Bayswater store in London. Carter said: "Bayswater is an upmarket area with a very mixed customer base. We have introduced our first olive bar there, and the store also has a wide kosher range as our research showed a local demand. We want to get our customers out of the basket and into the trolley" New entrants to the convenience market, like M & S are also in the Budgens firing line. Carter said: "We are ready for a fight over Simply Food for the high street convenience shopper." Budgens' Tottenham Court Road store, the next due for a major refurbishment, will be used to pilot further new projects. *Carter joined Budgens in September from Sainsbury, where he had an 18 year career. {{NEWS }}