Frozen food specialist Farmfoods is rebranding its estate in an attempt to give stores a more upmarket look.

It is ditching its blue colour scheme and replacing it with a mostly black scheme, featuring the Farmfoods logo on a background of rolling green fields and blue skies.

The rebrand, which started in Scotland, was now being rolled out across the rest of the company's 304 stores, revealed a source close to the retailer.

"The ceiling perimeter graphics, plastic dado rails, freezer front graphics, till surrounds and all fascias will become a combination of a field scene and black background," confirmed another source, adding that staff uniforms would also change from blue to black over the course of the year.

The new look is already in use on Farmfoods' own-label produce, and the chain has adopted the new straplines 'Freezing in the Goodness' and 'Great Food at Amazing Prices'.

"Farmfoods has a downmarket image because its stores are in poorer locations and it's a value retailer," said Malcolm Pinkerton, senior analyst at research consultancy Verdict.

"The rebranding could help them as they try to move towards more premium and added-value products rather than pure discounting. The rebranding is to capitalise on the trends in consumer behaviour for seeking out quality and value and the health benefits of frozen food - both the straplines achieve this."

Farmfoods, which declined to comment on the rebranding, has benefited from the growth in frozen food sales in recent years.

Latest figures from TNS show that in the 12 weeks to 22 February, Farmfoods' sales grew by 14.7% compared with the same period 12 months ago, giving it a 0.5% share of the market.

Its growth outstripped that of Iceland and other freezer centres, which grew by 13.6% and 9.9% respectively.

Its stores are mainly in Scotland and the north of England, although the chain is slowly spreading southwards.