As part of the trial, Budgens retailers are selling an increased range of loose fresh produce and seasonal lines. The products are displayed in wicker baskets, wooden crates and on display tables to give the category less of an industrial feel. Colour photography, large barkers providing information about the products and recipe cards have also been introduced.
Staff in the trial stores have attended a workshop on brand awareness and customer service. Budgens retailers also visited Musgrave GB's Wellingborough depot to witness the supply chain process first hand.
The trials are part of Musgrave Group's plans to bring the Budgens fascia in line with its SuperValu and Centra counterparts. In June this year, Musgrave Group CEO Chris Martin revealed to The Grocer that he planned to make changes to Budgens' bakery, fruit & veg and deli offers this year to build on the standards of the Irish business. SuperValu and Centra are known across Ireland for their focus on fresh food and their close relationship with Irish suppliers.
Budgens sales director Dan Quest said the trials would "give customers a reason to keep coming back to Budgens".
"There is real interest in the product and shoppers are using the recipe cards," he said. "We've brought to life our Budgens brand essence of 'Real Food for Today's Communities' and shown that we have a brand that can successfully compete against the multiples."