Tesco was scheduled to host analysts on a trip to eastern Europe at the time of publication, but broker MF Global warned that the grocer should devote more time to telling the City how it will fix the UK business.

MF analyst Mike Dennis said Tesco’s shares have not performed this year, largely because of investor concerns about the lack of UK growth.

He maintained: “Tesco would do better to spend a day with analysts talking about how Richard Brasher and his team will sort out UK operations and get it back to growth.”

He added: “Tesco cannot afford to paper over the cracks appearing in its UK operations.”

Dennis questioned the strategic thinking behind the launch of ‘venture brands’, such as Chokablok ice cream. He said Tesco is “making a strategic mistake as it has no equity value in taking such a route”.