Jamie Oliver is launching a 40-strong premium food range in March with ambitious plans to hit sales of more than £16m within two years, The Grocer can reveal.

The range of ambient Mediterranean pasta and pesto sauces, herbs, oils, antipasti and bagged salads marks the debut of new Jamie Oliver branding, which will be used across food and non-food lines.

Developed by Fresh Retail Ventures, which was set up in 2006 and is 50%-owned by Oliver, the new range hits Tesco stores next month.

Listings with other multiples - including Sainsbury's, whose advertising Oliver fronts - have yet to be finalised.

The new range would help triple the company's £7.5m turnover by 2010, predicted Fresh Retail. At the moment, 70% of its sales are generated by non food licences such as Tefal and Royal Worcester. By 2010, 70% would be derived from its food lines, it forecast.

The new line-up is priced at a 5% premium to the best of own label, such as Tesco Finest and Sainsbury's Taste the Difference.

However, it would offer disproportionately better quality for that price, said Fresh Retail head of marketing Jane Hilton.

Next year, another 40 products would be introduced, she added. "We're working on expanding more into the chilled category beyond salads," she said. "There's no reason why we should limit this to ambient. But we will not enter a category unless we offer something different and better. As long as it means people are getting into the kitchen and getting involved in cooking, then nothing is out of bounds."

As well as exploring soups, cereals and frozen, Fresh Retail is considering a Jamie Oliver organic offer.

The launch will be supported by a £1.5m to £2m marketing budget over the first year with activity focusing on price promotions, in-store activity and Oliver's website rather than TV.

The Jamie Oliver sauces and oils trialled in 50 Sainsbury's over the past 18 months will be withdrawn, though the most successful lines will be rolled into the new range.