Marks & Spencer has posted a 4.5% increase in total UK food sales in the 13 weeks to 29 June 2013, as the group saw overall sales rise 3.3%.

Total UK sales were up 2.7%, while online sales rocketed 29.9%. Like-for-like growth in food increased 1.8% ahead of overall like-for-like sales in the UK (+0.3%), while general merchandise saw a decline of 1.6%.

Marc Bolland, chief executive, Marks & Spencer, said: “Our general merchandise business showed some improvement this quarter and the food business delivered another excellent performance, continuing the strong underlying trend.

“Our international business also performed well during the quarter and M& sales were very strong.”

The retailer said its food sales grew well ahead of the market, with customers choosing M&S as a destination shop for special occasions, as well as for everyday food purchases.