Sales at frozen food specialist Iceland have fallen but the Big Food Group said it plans to roll out 100 new stores over the year as customer spend increased at its new formats.

Like-for-like sales for the 13 weeks to March 28 at Iceland fell 3.4% compared to a 3.6% decline in the previous quarter.

BFG said its focus on promotional and advertising support for Iceland after Christmas had maintained the improving sales trend. While sales at its three new formats have seen an increase of 16% since conversion last year, and across all 33 stores converted sales were up 14.1%.

BFG chief executive, Bill Grimsey said: "The performance of our refurbished Iceland stores is particularly pleasing and the Group is now geared up for a major rollout of the new format stores across the estate.”

Customer spend at the new stores is up 15.5%, with fresh produce, ready meals and ethnic foods proving popular, BFG said.

At the Booker cash and carry business, non-tobacco sales grew by 0.8%.

Woodward Foodservice continued its strong performance with existing customers and has made several new account wins, the company noted.

BFG’s full-year results will be announced on May 29.