Exclusive John Wood Woolworths has signed a supply deal for Spar to provide all the food, alcohol and tobacco to its General Stores and for Spar imagery to be used in store. In addition, Woolworths is also trialling food supplied by Spar in four of its 788 local high street stores. The supply deal for the 20 General Stores covers ambient, chilled and fresh food, beers, wines and spirits and tobacco. Both branded and Spar own brand products will be supplied. Spar signage, such as the pictures over the drinks fixtures and chillers, will be used together with the chiller fins. Gill Barr, business development director for Woolworths Local, said the Spar offer suited the needs of the customers at its c-stores. She said: "We trade 7am-11pm and sell a broad range of products including food; currently more than half of all our customers buy food. "Our new supplier will ensure our customers have an improved choice of high quality, convenience food. We were particularly impressed by their distribution structure, their range and their new product development expertise." She said use of Spar imagery would emphasise the food offer in the store to customers. "The trial in the local stores is at an early stage. I don't envisage all the stores stocking food, but it could be a significant number." Spar md Morton Middleditch said: "This is a very exciting development for Spar and one that allows us to be linked with a quality high street retailer." Middleditch said the experience gained by Spar in supplying Naafi stores had been invaluable in winning the extra business. He added: "Partnerships of this kind are the way forward. This has real potential." Middleditch emphasised that Spar's retail members had been consulted, together with any members in the vicinity of the stores, and all had backed the deal. Spar will take over from the current supplier Booker in March. {{NEWS }}