The Co-op group is to roll out an in-store labelling system for its bakery products following a successful trial.

Pre-printed labels were replaced with a print-as-you-bake function as part of a pilot scheme in 10 stores, with results showing a range of improvements. Costs and wastage were cut due to pre-printed labels no longer being stored, produced and distributed from a central point.

There was also an improvement in product availability as no time was wasted pre-ordering labels. The new system will now be rolled out to 150 stores.

The system comprises a touchscreen and thermal printer, with staff calling up products via an image on the screen. They can then print a specified number of bar-coded labels, with the date, price and product information for The Co-operative’s standard range of baked goods and pastries, as well as its Truly Irresistible range.

A further 350 stores will be adapted as part of the company’s two-year store refit programme, which includes the enhancement of the bakery offering to customers under The Co-operative Bakery.

Steve Bond, the Group’s Food IS head of solutions and service said: “What was seen as a simple IS development has enabled the business to enhance the customer experience of the brand in our food stores while making cost savings.”