Premier Foods is stepping up its campaign to encourage consumers to eat more Hovis Wholemeal bread at breakfast by taking the message to the small screen for the first time.

It has invested £3m in the five-week Wholemeal Challenge ad run double the amount behind last year's push.

The ad ,which features brand ambassador and Olympic cyclist Victoria Pendleton, kicks off this weekend. The accompanying social media activity would be the brand's biggest to date, added Premier.

Featuring a new "Stop me Snacking" strapline, the ad features Pendleton munching the brand's wholemeal bread after cycle training. The athlete quips that she has to eat healthily as she "wears lycra for a living". Pendleton will also feature on promotional packaging throughout the campaign.

"Our new campaign ­reinforces that Hovis Wholemeal, with a healthy topping, is a great alternative to cereal," said Caroline Jary, who this week replaced Jon Goldstone as head of marketing for Hovis.

"Rich in fibre, it can help you feel fuller for longer and is a great tool to stop snacking the key message of this year's campaign. Furthermore, we have moved the campaign forward from April to January to tap into the time of year when consumers are at their most health ­conscious."

Jary also confirmed that the brand's dispute with Tesco, which dropped 12 Hovis products from its shelves last year after Premier sought to pass price hikes on to consumers, had now been resolved.

The products were now back on shelf, she said.

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