Tesco’s high-profile bakery director Tony Reed has been promoted to operations director for 240 northern superstores, with a successor yet to be named.

Mr Reed, who has been bakery director since August 2001, starts his new job on March 13. He will cover stores between 20,000sq ft and 60,000 sq ft in size from Suffolk to Scotland and Northern Ireland. He will also manage a Scottish office.

Mr Reed will be best remembered for pushing through implementation of standard-sized bread baskets during his four-and-a-half year tenure. He told British Baker his other achievements include building strong relationships with suppliers – such as Inter Link, Northern Foods, Maple Leaf, Fine Lady and Greek bakery Arnouti. And he is still “trying very hard with Harvestime”.

He said he is also proud of a link between Tesco and American doughnut giant Krispy Kreme, which now supplies 30 stores.

As he prepared to depart Mr Reed praised plant bakery innovations such as Hovis Invisible Crust. But he urged members of the Federation of Bakers (FoB) to “work together more”.

The FoB must come up with a “five-a-day” style campaign to promote bread, achieving the reverse of what Jamie Oliver did for Turkey Twizzlers, he said. A working group looking at collaborative deliveries would also be welcome.

“Bread will be the first aisle I look at in all my new stores,” said Mr Reed. “I have made a lot of friends over the years, many based in the north, and I hope to keep in touch as I travel around.”

Few bakers, apart from Warburtons, were making money four years ago, and the industry is financially more stable now, he added.