Morrisons’ bakery department helped the retailer achieve strong third-quarter figures, announced at the beginning of December, which saw total like-for-like sales rise 8.1%.

In-store bakery buyer Andy Clegg said Morrisons’ bakery department was "trading beyond expectations", with initiatives introduced earlier in the year paying off, with new customers switching from other supermarkets. Morrisons estimates that 700,000 more customers visit its stores each week compared to 18 months ago.

"Our baker’s [display] tables have worked well to highlight our scratch-made speciality breads and the skill of our bakers to new customers," said Clegg. "Our decision to introduce more in-store theatre, with open bakeries so customers can see products being made, has also paid off. We have made a huge investment in fresh, good-quality food that is value for money."

Morrisons’ patisserie counters are also performing well, as are sales of own-label sliced bread, said Clegg. "Volume growth is good in plant bread, because people are making their own sandwiches to take to work, rather than spending £3.50 when they are out."