It's a constant daily exercise for us. We count the number of out of stocks every day with our tracker to ensure that every range we carry is on shelf at all times. In general our availability is very strong.
Morrisons' stores in Yorkshire are offering a locally sourced Yorkshire range. Is this a concept you'd like to see in Gloucester?
Absolutely. I'd be very keen to see a locally sourced Gloucester section. We already sell West Country milk and I'd love to see the offer extended into other categories.
Other retailers have noted a decline in ready meal sales since the credit crunch hit. Is this the case in your store?
Actually ready meals and garlic bread have been some of our strongest lines recently. The Best ready meals range taps into a market for a tasty, convenient meal that people may previously have gone to the pub for, so in a way it's benefited from the tightening of purse strings.
How broad a non-food offering do you have?
Because the store is only 26,000 sq ft, we can't afford the space to have a full non-food range. We do, however, stock a seasonal range that does very well. The seasonal aisle changes over an eight to 10-week period to keep the offer fresh. Currently we have a July sale on furniture, pots, pans and cutlery and we've just started to clear through some of the school range.
How do your environmental credentials measure up?
We play our part in Morrisons' CSR strategy. We track our energy performance on a month-by-month basis and have energy champions in store. Because we try to differentiate ourselves as a food specialist we look at food miles very closely. We've also halved our carrier bag usage in the past six weeks and have just introduced reusable wine carriers.