Strong performances in chilled foods and bakery offset a decline in frozen sales at manufacturing giant Northern Foods.

Like-for-like sales rose by 7% in the three months to 2 October, with double-digit gains in both chilled and bakery. But frozen, which includes the relaunched Goodfella’s pizza brand, saw a decline of 16% in the second quarter.

Overall sales were up 3% for the first half of the year.

Northern also unveiled plans to reorganise into two divisions, branded and chilled.

The branded arm comprises Goodfella's, McDougalls and Holland's Pies, Fox's Biscuits and Matthew Walker Puddings. The chilled arm combines Northern’s sandwiches, salads and ready meals businesses.

The company said its new structure would “further streamline the business, focus management expertise and drive performance improvements and cost savings”. A one-off cost of £6m will result from the restructure.

"We are taking decisive actions to ensure that we are well positioned for the competitive market conditions which we are experiencing and expect to continue,” said chief executive Stefan Barden. “Our finances remain strong and we continue to trade in line with expectations.”

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