The Co-operative Retail Trading Group is to hold two Meet the Buyer sessions in the north of England in September in a drive to step up local sourcing.
CRTG's specialist buyers will then make a second visit to Scotland, with a session due to take place in Glasgow in partnership with Scottish Enterprise by the year end.
CRTG business development manager John Sheen and a team of Co-op buyers will attend sessions, meeting top local food producers.
He said: "We don't pay lipservice to local sourcing, we find out the demands of local suppliers first. We want to give them an opportunity to supply a retail business. The success rate at events is usually about 10 % to 12%."
As part of the focus on local, CRTG is due to announce the appointment of a new local sourcing manger in the next couple of weeks.
CRTG held its first Meet the Buyer event in Northern Ireland in 2000, and has held similar sessions in Scotland, Wales and the south in partnership with local food marketing groups. Almost 80 suppliers attended the recent Meet the Buyer day in Bristol.

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