Somerfield is set to overhaul its supply chain operations in a bid to resolve its ongoing availability issues.

The supply chain is to get new forecasting and replenishment systems, new tools to measure availability and plans are in place to simplify in-store processes.

Last month The Grocer revealed that Somerfield had the worst availability record of the top six supermarkets at just 94%, compared with best performer Morrisons at 97.8%.

The improvements are part of wider shake-up at Somerfield as it attempts to streamline the business and drive efficiencies. It has completed a strategic review of its logistics infrastructure with provider Wincanton, and has announced plans to close two of its chilled and ambient sites, in Tewkesbury and Ross-on Wye.

Wincanton, which operates 10 Somerfield depots, said the majority of the 500 workers affected would be offered new positions.

Somerfield said the integration of 140 Texaco and Jet forecourt sites, acquired in 2005, was progressing as planned. The forecourts have been managed as a standalone business for the past 24 months.

Somerfield is in the process of converting the forecourts into Somerfield-branded c-stores with a fuel offer. Systems will be fully integrated by April and full fascia conversion completed within 18 months.

Five stores were redeveloped before Christmas, and a further 16 are due to be re-launched by April.

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