Somerfield has signalled its desire to be better at fresh foods with the opening of the first its so called Progressive format stores. The format being trialed in Rustington and Crowthorne is designed to appeal to consumers in upmarket areas. About one third of the space at the 7,800 sq ft store in Crowthorne, Berkshire, is devoted to fresh foods and meal solutions ­ with serve over counters for meat, rotisserie, deli and curry to go. The store in Crowthorne, which reopened last week, also features new look areas for bakery and health and beauty; has plenty of low gondolas to make the store feel bigger; and uses metallic shelving for a more contemporary feel. Given the store's catchment area is very affluent, the Megadeals promotional messaging has been toned down, and upmarket ranges such as organics and the chain's Gold Selection deli range introduced. A vibrant colour scheme is used within the store. And on the front, a yellow themed fascia is being tested. Richard Smith, business director for marketing, said: "It's the top up shopper we are trying to catch. We have talked about it for years, but this is our attempt to really catch them. "This is much more driven towards a fresh food offer. We are reappraising stores to bring them up to where the thinking is today. We are giving people in the locality what they need. They don't need a me-too' supermarket offer." The Progressive initiative forms part of Somerfield's plan to open 25 concept stores by Christmas. These include its more established City concept, which has food to go at its heart. {{NEWS }}