Sainsbury's has recorded its eighth consecutive quarter of growth, reporting a 5% increase in like-for-like sales, excluding fuel, for the 12 weeks to 30 December.

Including fuel, like-for-like sales increased 4.2%, the retailer said in a trading update.

Total sales rose 6.8% excluding fuel during the period, or 5.8% including fuel.

“Achieving our eighth consecutive quarter of like-for-like sales growth demonstrates that our recovery remains firmly on track,” said Justin King, CEO of Sainsbury's.

The retailer achieved record sales in the week before Christmas, serving more than 20 million customers, with online sales up 60%.

“Traditionally the next few months are particularly price competitive as customers tighten their belts, and we expect this year to be no different,” King added.

“We are pleased with our progress over Christmas and the results achieved give us good momentum to deliver sales growth as we enter the fourth quarter.”