The Co-operative Group is the first supermarket to offer students a 10% discount on groceries with a National Union of Students (NUS) extra card.

The partnership with the NUS offers around 600,000 students the discount at 3,600 stores from 23 September.

As well as The Co-operative Group, Anglia, Midcounties, Midlands, Scotmid and Southern co-ops are taking part.

Currently, students can use the card in other retailers including Asos, Amazon, Giraffe and Alton Towers.

The card is available to all students over 16 years-old, and costs £12 for the year from the date of purchase.

Exclusions will include baby milk, stamps, saving schemes, National Lottery and Health Lottery purchases, gift vouchers, cigarettes, fuel, PayPoint, in-store concessions and electrical goods.

CJ Antal-Smith, head of commercial – grocery at The Co-op, said: “Students are facing increasing financial pressures while studying, and are becoming more savvy when it comes to food shopping. We wanted to help students, many of whom are living away from home for the first time, to live and cook on a budget. 

 “By offering a 10 per cent discount with an NUS extra card, we’re giving a big incentive for students to make good, healthy choices about the food they eat.”

NUS extra uses collective purchasing power to champion students by enabling access to exclusive promotional deals through the card, sales of which put millions of pounds annually back into student unions.

Raechel Mattey, NUS Vice President said: “When we asked our students what they most wanted from NUS extra, a supermarket deal was the overwhelming answer. We’re so proud to be able to partner with The Co-operative on this, because of its ethical food policies and its support for Fairtrade. 

“This deal reflects the realities of students’ lives by addressing finance and the rising cost of living, nutrition and student lifestyle priorities. We want parents and students to know that between us NUS and The Co-operative will ensure students thrive.”