Marks & Spencer is to sell branded products in all of its UK stores following a successful trial.

Grocery brands will include Coca-Cola, Marmite, Kellogg's and Heinz, with Fairy, Pantene and Persil among the goods in household, healthcare and beauty. The move comes following a 16-month trial period across stores in the north east and south east of England.

The range of ambient products will be rolled out to M&S stores over the next year, beginning this month with additional stores in the trial areas and expanding into other regions from January.

Smaller stores will offer around 50 branded products, with up to 400 products in M&S’ largest outlets. All of the branded products have been price-matched against major supermarkets.

“Our trials have shown us that an edited selection of branded grocery and household products has a place at Marks & Spencer,” executive chairman Sir Stuart Rose said.

The news comes as the chain announced that half-year profits were largely flat against last year at £298m. M&S said food sales rose 1.8% despite its market share falling from 3.7% to 3.5% (24 w/e 9 October).

Reduced margins reflected “planned investment in prices and increased promotional activity, offset by better buying and a reduction in food waste”.

The trading statement also showed the high street giant continuing to pour cash into its Project 2020 modernisation scheme, spending £84m in the first half of 2008 and 2009 on updating its supply chain and IT systems.

How M&S will bring order to the chaos of its supply system (31/10/09)
M&S plans to cut prices again to improve sales (3/10/09)
M&S pins hopes on brands as extended trial moves south (16/3/09)