A recent Which? survey into the convenience sector which ranked Bestway Wholesale’s symbol offer best-one as one of the top three brands, proves the company’s success in the rankings last year was no one-hit wonder, according to the BW symbol development director James Hall.

He said the investigation into the convenience store sector had seen best-one cement its position as the UK’s favourite symbol group, as voted for by shoppers from consumer association Which?

The study - which polled over 6,800 shoppers across the UK - saw best-one come third overall in the entire convenience channel, only behind M&S Simply Food and Little Waitrose and above Sainsbury’s Local, the Co-op and all other major symbol groups including Premier, Costcutter and Budgens.

“This proves categorically that we are moving in the right direction and shows that last year’s result, where best-one also ranked top of the pile, was no one-hit-wonder," said James Hall.

"Our members already know that we lead the field in terms of service, pricing and promotions and to be voted the top symbol operator by shoppers is a fantastic achievement. Despite all the turmoil and consolidation over the past year, we have just got on with what we do best for our members and shoppers.

"The coming year will see major advances in fresh and chilled and food-to-go which should strengthen our leadership in the independent convenience sector. There is still great headroom for growth. We did not rest on our laurels last year and we won’t this year. Our mission is to be the symbol of choice for progressive independent retailers and although we are well on our way to achieving this, we can do better and will do better.”

The Which report analysed eleven areas from ease of finding products to value for money with best-one unbeaten in every single category.

Since January, best-one claims to have signed up over 100 retailers to its symbol operation with a further 250 registering their intent to do so. Bestway Wholesale has also doubled the size of its Chilled Distribution Centre in Coventry to meet the growing needs of new and current members as well as shoppers and has also invested significantly in its best-one own-label range.

Hall added:“We have had an unprecedented level of demand from retailers wanting to join best-one which is fantastic news but, for us, it’s not a numbers game. It’s about ensuring that our retailers match the standards we expect and deliver for shoppers across a whole range of metrics. The Which? Report suggests that those symbols who chase store numbers weaken their proposition in the eyes of shoppers. Of course, as a group we want to continue to grow numbers but are more interested in chasing shoppers than chasing stores numbers.”