Grocery Aid, which is the trading name of the National Grocers’ Benevolent Fund (NGBF), spent £4.3m on welfare projects, according to its end of year financial results.

Last year, more than 7,800 people called the charity or accessed its website for financial and emotional support.

The charity’s Carers’ Programme also offered financial and emotional support to around 580 people.

The welfare assistance is only possible due to the support of the industry with the charity’s regional branches having a particularly strong year, raising a record £1,163,335 in funds. This emphasises the important role the volunteers play in the success of the charity.

General director of Grocery Aid Gillian Barker said: “I am delighted to report that another great year of industry support has enabled Grocery Aid to help even more current and former colleagues in need.”

She added: “We have for the first time in our history helped more than 11,000 grocery colleagues.”

The charity was founded in 1857 to help people who work or have worked in the grocery sector.