Total sales rose 2.3% at Spar wholesaler Appleby Westward over Christmas.

Like-for-likes in the five weeks to 3 January rose 2.4% thanks to strong double-digit growth from Spar-branded produce, fresh meat and poultry. In the first week of 2013, like-for-likes rose 17.8%.

“These are encouraging figures with which to start the year,” said MD Mark McCammond. “We are well placed to help our retailers deliver a value offer.”