Mediterranean food brand Belazu has been merged with its trade arm Fresh Olive as part of a strategy to double the retail side of its business.

The unified business - The Belazu Ingredient Company - said bringing its consumer-facing brand together with its trade arm, which supplies in excess of 250 ingredients from the Mediterranean basin to foodservice, had enabled it to expand its grocery portfolio from nine to more than 100 products.

The extended grocery menu, available now, includes balsamic vinegars, olive oils, olives, antipasti and pesto - which have to date only been available to chefs.

The company, which sells its original Belazu brand through Waitrose, Sainsbury’s and Ocado, said it was hoping to launch its new range with those retailers as part of its aim to double its grocery sales, which accounts for 8% of the company’s overall £26m turnover, to £5m in the next three years, according to commercial director Peter Oden.

The initial response from retailers had been “very positive”, he said, adding the rebranded portfolio would tap demand for “credible high quality ingredients that a classic fmcg company cannot supply”.

This is not the company’s first attempt at growing its retail business. In 2012, it invested heavily in a packaging and website revamp to tie the whole Fresh Olive/Belazu story together, but said it was confident that its new “one brand and one voice” approach would make a difference.

“Previously we went for the mainstream consumer via our separate Belazu brand and we went for big step change growth from products that the rest of the business did not sell.”