Waitrose’s tie-up with Duchy Originals – in which the supermarket sells the upmarket range exclusively as Duchy Originals From Waitrose –  could account for as much as 7% of its total sales, according to MD Mark Price.

Speaking to The Grocer this week after Waitrose announced like-for-like food sales up 3.9% for the six months to 31 July, Price said the range would become a “significant” part of its business.

Waitrose formed a commercial partnership with Duchy a year ago and has since conducted a review of the entire range. It added a raft of new Duchy lines in August and is rolling out a further 200 lines during the next few weeks. Duchy Originals currently makes up 2% of Waitrose sales.

Waitrose’s operating profits rose 6.2% to £127.8m, while total sales were up 11.3% to £2.4bn. Price said he expected to finish the year with like-for-like food sales up 4%.

“We are now producing really strong profits. If you compare our results to our two-year figures we have seen a 20% sales increase.”

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