Sainsbury’s has chalked up like-for-like sales growth of 1.9% excluding fuel over the past three months.

Total sales excluding fuel were up 4.4% for the 16 weeks to 1 October. Sales for the first half of the year rose by 4.3%, the retailer said in a trading update released this morning.

Chief executive Justin King claimed the retailer’s convenience business had grown at 20% during the quarter, with like-for-like growth ahead of supermarkets.

Its premium range Taste the Difference and its value Basics range also both saw “strong growth”, he said. General merchandise and clothing sales were also “well ahead” of supermarkets.

“We expect the market environment to remain very competitive for the foreseeable future but we are confident in our ability to grow by doing a great job for our customers,” said King.

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